As we age, arthritis can begin to wear away the protective cartilage between bones and eventually cause patients to seek treatment for osteoarthritis-related diseases such as spinal stenosis. Once this cartilage wears away, bone growth may take its place to help support the spine causing painful bone against bone rubbing. Fortunately, there are spinal stenosis treatments that can help patients relieve the pain and discomfort associated with this degenerative disease.
What is it?
Simply put, spinal stenosis is a narrowing of the spaces between the spine. A lifetime of holding up your back can cause this narrowing to put pressure on the spinal nerve. Because it is often caused by every day wear and tear, older patients are more likely to suffer from this disease. Symptoms may include:
- Pain in the lower back
- Tingling or numbness
- Muscle weakness
- Difficulty in controlling bladder
Spinal stenosis treatment is important because as the disease progresses, the increased pressure on the spinal nerve can eventually cause paralysis.
If diagnosed early, there are several effective spinal stenosis treatment options. Medications such as NSAIDs can reduce inflammation and help reduce pain. Gentle exercise can keep the joints mobile.
Physical therapists are experts of the musculoskeletal system and can prescribe several spinal stenosis treatments that may help reduce pain:
- Massage therapy can be used to ease pressure on the spinal nerve
- Manual therapy and stretching exercises can increase range of motion and flexibility
- Strength exercises can build core, leg and back muscles to ease pressure on the spine
- Support devices that help reduce pressure on the back while walking
In severe or advanced cases, surgery to remove excess bone growth can provide relief. However, with any surgery, there is risk involved and surgery as a spinal stenosis treatment should only be considered as a last resort.
Scheduling spinal stenosis treatment with Armor Physical Therapy
Fortunately, the physical therapists of Armor Physical Therapy are experts in treating degenerative conditions such as spinal stenosis. If you have back pain related to arthritis and are considering your treatment options, contact one of our friendly staff today to set up your initial appointment.