Have you been suffering from chronic pain in your back or neck that makes it difficult for you to stand, sit or walk? Arthritis of the spine leads to severe pain and inflammation and is a common culprit of chronic back pain. The spinal joints in our spine withstand a significant amount of pressure, making them particularly prone to developing arthritis as we age.
There is no cure for spinal arthritis, but many non-surgical options can improve your condition. Your spine specialist may suggest a combination of the following arthritic spine treatments:
- Physical Therapy: Many people who have arthritis find great relief in exercise through physical therapy. Low impact exercises can relieve stiffness and increase mobility. Physical therapists are experts in movement. They can assist you with improving your quality of life through hands-on care, patient education, and prescribed exercises.
- Cold & Hot Compresses: The application of heat and ice can offer significant relief from the pain of arthritis. Use a cold compress first and then apply heat for acute back pain. Lowering the body temperature will help constrict the blood vessels, reduce swelling, decrease inflammation, and deliver a numbing effect. Once the inflammation has subsided, use heat therapy to relax tight muscles.
- Medications: Over-the-counter (OTC) and prescription medications for spinal arthritis commonly prescribed are Acetaminophen and Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, or NSAIDs. Prescription pain medications might be prescribed for the short-term when your arthritis pain is severe. Please discuss with your doctor what medications are best for your situation.
- Steroid Injections: Receiving a steroid injection provides immediate anti-inflammatory relief to the affected joint. These injections are an effective method of treatment to reduce the swelling of tendons and ease pressure on the nerve.
If experiencing back or neck pain for more than two weeks, the Spine Clinic of Oklahoma City can help. We provide compassionate and comprehensive total spine care to get relief from back and neck pain. Call us at or visit us online at www.thespineclinicok.com to schedule an appointment today.
Dr. Brett Braly is a board-certified fellowship-trained orthopaedic surgeon specializing in spinal surgery. Dr. Braly is a leading advocate for minimally invasive techniques in spine surgery. Dr. Braly is named in the top “20 under 40” best spine surgeons by the North American Spine Society.