Treating Chronic Arthritis Pain In The Spine
Facet joint arthritis is a degenerative condition. In its early stages, occasional mild back pain may respond to one or more of the above tips. However, spinal arthritis can affect the facet joints between each backbone in the lumbar spine, eventually leading to constant bone and/or nerve pain. Only a doctor can determine if arthritis of the facet joints is the source of chronic lumbar pain.
Sperling Medical Group offers a new noninvasive MRI-guided treatment called Focused Ultrasound, a one-time noninvasive outpatient procedure that gives lasting relief without the use of drugs, injections or surgery. To learn more, visit the Sperling Medical Group or contact us to set up a consultation.
NOTE: This content is solely for purposes of information and does not substitute for diagnostic or medical advice. Talk to your doctor if you have health concerns or questions of a personal medical nature.
Stiff Back Pain Relief
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Best Superfoods & Herbs For Back Inflammation
The #1 food for lower back inflammation pain is by far Turmeric. It can actually replace your NSAIDs all together and is fully backed by thousands of studies.
You can take Turmeric in standardized capsules or you can easily add it to your meals.
If you want it to be fully potent, add just a little black pepper and healthy fat to make it most bioavailable.
If you dont like the taste of Turmeric, you can add it to your green smoothie .
If you add a banana in there, or a few dates, you wont feel the taste at all.
Always use organic Turmeric to avoid nasty chemicals.
Not only is ginger a culinary marvel, but its health benefits are also stunning.
Ginger has some extremely potent anti-inflammation compounds, called gingerols.
There are many studies proving how effective ginger can be in the fight against inflammation when consumed regularly.
Studies have found that Ginger has the ability to inhibit nitrous oxide and is helpful for all general inflammatory processes.
The best way to use Ginger would be adding it fresh to your meals or your green smoothies . You can find fresh organic ginger root powder here.
3. Fish Oil
Fish oil can effectively ease inflammation and pain caused by many chronic conditions. The dose used in most convincing research is 2 to 4 grams of DHA + EPA daily.
Make sure to get fish oil from organic-raised fish, without additives and clean from heavy metals and toxins, like this one.
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Tips For Dealing With Lower Back Pain
By Robert Greenleaf, MD, Spine Surgeon
Lower back pain is extremely common and one of the top reasons for missed workdays. Thats because the lower back supports the weight of the upper body and is subject to a lot of stress and strainespecially during everyday movements like lifting and twisting.
One of two things typically causes lower back pain: a sudden injury or the wear and tear of aging, arthritis and physical activity. No matter the cause of your lower back pain, here are 10 recommendations that can help you relieve it and prevent future problems.
What Is The Best Treatment For Lower Back Strain
Treatment: Treatments for lower back strain may include giving your back a rest and taking medications that treat muscle spasm. Applying heat applications and massaging the painful area can also aid in treating lower back strain. Besides, reconditioning exercises can strengthen the lower back muscles.
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What Is The Function Of The Low Back
The low back, or lumbar area, serves a number of important functions for the human body. These functions include structural support, movement, and protection of certain body tissues.
When we stand, the lower back is functioning to support the weight of the upper body. When we bend, extend, or rotate at the waist, the lower back is involved in the movement. Therefore, injury to the structures important for weight bearing, such as the bony spine, muscles, tendons, and ligaments, often can be detected when the body is standing erect or used in various movements.
Protecting the soft tissues of the nervous system and spinal cord as well as nearby organs of the pelvis and abdomen is a critical function the lumbar spine and adjacent muscles of the low back.
Low Back Pain Symptoms: Does Your Back Hurt
Low back pain symptoms range from sharp and stabbing to a dull ache. The pains can be constant or intermittent and positional. Acute low back pain can appear suddenly after injury. Chronic back pain is defined as pain lasting more than three months. Consult a doctor if you have prolonged back pain longer than 72 hours.
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Know Your Otc Medications
Nonprescription pain relievers can help with muscle aches and stiffness. The two main types of over-the-counter options are nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and acetaminophen. NSAIDs include aspirin, ibuprofen, and naproxen.
True to their name, NSAIDs help lower inflammation that can lead to swelling and tenderness. But acetaminophen does not relieve inflammation. You can reach for either type of pain reliever for occasional back pain. NSAIDs may work a bit better, Hemani says, if you have arthritis of the spine or other inflammatory conditions.
Nerve Irritation And Lumbar Radiculopathy Causes Lower Back Pain
Nerve irritation: The nerves of the lumbar spine can be irritated by mechanical pressure by bone or other tissues, or from disease, anywhere along their paths — from their roots at the spinal cord to the skin surface. These conditions include lumbar disc disease , bony encroachment, and inflammation of the nerves caused by a viral infection . See descriptions of these conditions below.
Ii Take The Proper Dose Of Pain Medication
Be careful regarding the risks of relying on painkillers. It is a risk when it is your go to so thats why its not recommended until now and ONLY sometimes.
If the pain is severe and mobility is difficult, muscle relaxants, anti-inflammatory or anti-spasmodic medication may be required. Use with caution and only if needed.
There will be times when a muscle relaxant may seem like the only effective method. Please use caution as these drugs along with other relaxants have their side effects.
Medication will only address the pain, not the source. By not treating the cause, your spasm is very likely to return.
Pain medication also has a numbing effect . The effect can mislead you to believe that your symptoms have been treated when in reality, you simply cannot feel them. Desensitization may allow you to prematurely return to the activity or lifestyle that may have caused your spasm.
I have heard a lot of people do this too often only to end up with both permanent soft tissue and bone injury. If you numb these areas with drugs, they cant warn you anymore.
When these nerves have become temporarily desensitized, you are more likely to re-injure yourself without your awareness.
Minimize your dosage
Back Exercises And Stretches
Simple back exercises and stretches can often help reduce back pain. These can be done at home as often as you need to.
For information about exercises and stretches that can help, see:
A GP may be able to provide information about back exercises if you’re unsure what to try, or you may want to consider seeing a physiotherapist for advice. Read about how to get access to physiotherapy.
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When Should I See My Healthcare Provider About Lower Back Pain
Lower back pain usually gets better with rest and pain relievers. Back pain that doesnt go away may be a sign of a more serious condition.
See your provider if you have:
- Pain that doesnt get better after about a week of at-home care.
- Tingling, numbness, weakness or pain in your buttocks or legs.
- Severe pain or muscle spasms that interfere with your normal activities.
- Fever, weight loss, bowel or bladder problems or other unexplained symptoms.
A note from Cleveland Clinic
Millions of people live with low back pain. Stiffness, pain and limited movement can have a major impact on quality of life. But you may be able to avoid lower back pain by maintaining a healthy weight and staying active. Talk to your provider if back pain doesnt go away or if youre unable to do the activities you enjoy. Several treatments can relieve pain, help you move better and get more out of life.
Last reviewed by a Cleveland Clinic medical professional on 01/18/2021.
Yoga Pilates And Tai Chi Seem To Help But Its Not Clear That Theyre Any Better Than Other Exercise
Theres lots of research on back pain and yoga. Not all of it is high-quality, but taken together, the evidence pretty uniformly suggests yoga can both decrease pain and improve back-related function.
The most recent Cochrane systematic review on yoga and chronic low back pain, published in 2017, sums up the results of the best available studies, which mostly focused on the Iyengar, Hatha, or Viniyoga forms of yoga:
There is low- to moderate-certainty evidence that yoga compared to non-exercise controls results in small to moderate improvements in back-related function at three and six months. Yoga may also be slightly more effective for pain at three and six months, however the effect size did not meet predefined levels of minimum clinical importance.
So again, this isnt an end-all treatment but the evidence we have points in the direction of a benefit.
Importantly, the review authors also noted that its not clear whether yoga is better than other exercises, since there were few head-to-head comparisons tracking yoga against other kinds of workouts.
For Pilates, the evidence was a little more mixed: It was associated with small or no effects on pain and no effects on function compared with other types of exercise. Again, though, pretty much every back expert I spoke to said any exercise is better than no exercise, so if Pilates is something you enjoy, do it.
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Treating Back Pain At Home
Aside from such severe injuries or arthritis, most lumbar pain is short term and may respond well to home care, especially if its a recent occurrence and you suspect you know how you may have caused it. If the level of pain is mild, here are five things you can try at homebut if pain lingers or gets worse, discontinue your efforts and consult your doctor:
Take It Slow When Getting Up
Taking it slow when you get out of bed can be beneficial. You may want to use your arms to sit up slowly before moving your legs off the side of the bed. Once you plant your feet on the ground, shoulder-width apart, you can stand up slowly, using your leg strength instead of your back to help you up.
After carefully standing, you can further relieve tension by reaching your arms up above your head and stretching slowly from side to side.
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Make Your Ride As Smooth As Possible
Bumps in the road can jar your spine and increase pain. For a smoother ride, consider:
- Riding in a passenger car, rather than an SUV or pickup
- Replacing worn shocks to limit the bounce in the car
- Replacing worn tires to reduce vibration or shaking
- Sitting on a car seat pillow or coccyx cushion to provide more padding between you and the road
What Does It Mean When Your Right Side Of Body Hurts
Symptoms you experience with pain can be very important for you and your doctor in figuring out the potential cause of your pain. They can include nausea, cramping, diarrhea, fever and constipation. Common causes of right-sided abdominal pain include: Liver disease, liver cancer, or liver infection.
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Common Causes Of Chronic Back Pain
Chronic back painis usually age-related, but can also result from a prior injury. The mostcommon causes include:
- Arthritis of the spine the gradual thinning of the cartilage inside the spine
- Spinal stenosis narrowing of the spinal canal that may lead to nerve pain
- Disc problems, such as a herniated or bulging disc
- Myofascial pain syndromeunexplained muscle pain and tenderness
In some cases, its difficult to pinpoint the cause of chronic back pain.If your doctor has exhausted all diagnostic options, its time to seek asecond opinion from a back pain specialist, recommends Nava. Itsimportant not to make rushed decisions or undergo extensive medicalprocedures until the origin of the pain is found. Not only may they nothelp they could make the pain worse, warns Nava.
If the source of the pain is not known or cant be treated, your bestoption may be to work with your doctor on reducing the flare-ups and makingthe pain manageable with nonsurgical treatments.
Rub On Medicated Creams
Skin creams, salves, ointments, or patches may help when your back feels stiff, sore, and tense. Many of these products contain ingredients such as menthol, camphor, or lidocaine that can cool, heat, or numb the affected area.
Put on creams right where you hurt. Ask someone to apply it if you have trouble reaching the spot.
âIt’s not going to be a mainstay at providing significant relief, but it can calm things down,â Ray says.
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Start These 2 Simple But Very Effective Exercises Now
What you can do now at this point is to practice these 2 simple exercises. They are among many specific and targeted exercises from the eBook which are the Seated Twist and the Lying Twist. They will help you both to loosen, strengthen and stabilize your spine, making it much easier for you to turn and reach to avoid triggering another spasm.
Reducing your back spasms will also reduce muscle guarding, a major factor which causes many to suffer from recurring pain in the morning.
The Seated and Lying Twist exercises help to release tight, lower back muscles which can fatigue and trigger a spasm. If you suffer from them, you may find that even these simple movements can be difficult to execute in full range.
As with all exercises, dont force yourself to perform the full stretch right away. You may cause more pain by doing this. Work your way up one degree or inch at a time very slowly over several days. Remember, your body is NOT accustomed to such movement.
It is common to trigger yourself by reaching or moving in a twisted position due to excessive tightness. They can strike during even the most mundane and simple of action such as reaching for a pen on the floor. These exercises help you to improve these tight areas to protect you.
- Dont Bend and Lift the Wrong Way. Try a Safer Way to Lift.
STRETCH AND STRENGTHEN THE MUSCLES THAT ARE PRONE TO SPASM WHILE CONDITIONING THE CORE MUSCLES THAT PROTECT YOU
Back spasms are NOT a quick fix problem.
Will Bed Rest Help Back Pain
Doctors often recommend continuing your usual activities of daily living as soon as possible. Studies suggest that strict bedrest can often prolong or worsen low back pain. Bed rest can also lead to secondary complications such as depression, decreased muscle tone, and blood clots in the legs. You should try and keep moving while avoiding activities that noticeably aggravate or worsen back pain. By staying active, those who suffer from low back pain can gain greater flexibility and quicker recovery.
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What Are Some Complementary Alternative And Emerging Treatments For Lower Back Pain
In some cases, doctors suggest therapies that are not considered standard of care. They probably wont be covered by insurance, but they may be worth considering. Examples include:
Platelet-rich plasma . PRP treatments use a small sample of your own blood that has concentrated amounts of blood building blocks known as platelets. Your doctor then injects the PRP directly into a damaged disc. The theory is that PRP injections use your own healing system to accelerate improvement of injured tendons, ligaments, muscles, and joints. PRP treatment has a longer track record in knee osteoarthritis, but a recent review article in the Journal of Spine Surgery suggests it may have a useful role for back pain, too. PRP needs a lot more research before it can be considered a proven technique.
Stem cells. In this emerging treatment, your doctor injects stem cells harvested from your hip into the intervertebral disc or discs causing your pain. Doing so may lessen pain and the degenerative effects of aging, though, like PRP, more research is needed before stem cells for lower back pain could eventually become the standard of care.
Acupuncture. Your doctor probably doesnt perform acupuncture , but may support you trying it as a complementary therapy. Acupuncture involves careful insertion of fine, sterile needles into specific points on your body. This may stimulate the release of your natural pain-killing chemicals.