Complementary Treatments For Lumbar Disc Herniation
If you have a herniated lumbar disc, then you may have excruciating pain that radiates down your legs. Your legs and feet may also feel numb, and you may develop tingling sensations. Your pain specialist may prescribe a short-term course of narcotic pain medications, however, these may not be appropriate for chronic pain. Here are some complementary treatments for lumbar disc pain, which may improve your symptoms so that you can take less medication.
Many of the points that the acupuncturist chooses are those that suppress both local and systemic inflammation. The chosen points also relieve pain, promote optimal blood flow, and speed healing. Other points that your acupuncturist may target include those associated with lowering stress levels and anxiety. By targeting these points, you may feel less anxious in response to severe pain, and because of this, you may sleep better at night.
Restful sleep is essential for proper healing of herniated discs because when your sleep your body releases hormones that help relieve pain and inflammation. Although acupuncture is considered reliable, safe, and effective, talk to your physician before trying new complementary or alternative treatments for your back pain.
The B vitamins help promote healthy nerve function and may be helpful in treating a herniated lumbar disc, especially when it is impinging on nearby nerves. Your pain management physician may recommend that you increase your intake of vitamin B-rich foods such as dairy products, brown rice, legumes, eggs, citrus fruit, and green, leafy vegetables. If you are unable to eat these foods because of digestive problems or otherwise, consider taking an over-the-counter multi-vitamin and mineral supplement contain the essential B vitamins for back pain relief.
If increasing your intake of vitamin B-rich foods or taking supplements fails to alleviate your pain, your physician may refer you to a neurologist for further treatment. Your neurologist may prescribe moderate doses of vitamin B6 and monitor you closely for side effects. Vitamin B6 is often recommended for people with carpal tunnel syndrome because it helps relieve pain, dampen inflammation, and repair damaged nerves.
If you herniate your lumbar disc, see your doctor as soon as possible. When you combine the above complementary interventions with your doctor's treatment plan, you may notice a significant improvement in your pain, mobility, range of motion, and flexibility. It may take weeks or months before your disc pain resolves, but with patience and the right treatment plan, you will get better.