June 24, 2022

Pain Relief Options for Back Pain - An Overview

Dr. Venu Vemuri

No one wants to deal with back pain. Whether just the occasional twinge or chronic discomfort, back pain can seriously disrupt your everyday life. Getting up in the morning, bending over to tie your shoes, or just getting around the house are simple examples of everyday activities that can be made burdensome by back pain.

For some, the thought of treating their back pain brings worry. Invasive, costly, and risky surgeries often come into mind as people contemplate treatment for back pain. Luckily, for most people suffering from back pain, surgery is not the only option. In fact at miiSpine, a back treatment specialty practice located in Louisville, Kentucky, surgery is not commonly advised, and is typically treated as a last resort. Here are some common back pain treatment options that are sure to get you up and moving again!

Epidurals for Back Pain

You may have heard of epidurals being used to treat pain during labor, but this is not their only use. Epidural injections can be very helpful in reducing inflammation and pain in the spine. The injection is a blend of steroids and other medications, like local anesthetics, that is designed to relieve inflammation and pressure on the nerves. Often, epidurals are prescribed to relieve a pinched nerve, spinal stenosis, and other similar problems. These injections are fairly quick and easy, and generally do not require any long doctor’s visits or recovery time, which makes them a very attractive option for those hesitant to go under the knife.

Dry Needling for Back Pain

Dry needling is a very unique pain treatment option in which extremely thin needles are inserted into the patient’s back. These needles are targeting “trigger points” or spots in your back muscles that could be restricting motion or causing pain and tightness. When inserted into the trigger point, the needles help to relax the tight muscles by increasing blood flow to the area. Dry needling is often confused with acupuncture, and while the two procedures may both involve similar equipment, they are very different. Acupuncture has roots in traditional Chinese medicine, dating back over 3000 years. Acupuncture needles are inserted only into the skin, as the procedure is related to ancient beliefs concerning the flow of energy through the body. Because of this, dry needling is generally considered more effective by today’s standards for treating pain.

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy for Back Pain

Your mind is responsible for identifying and processing pain and trauma. When dealing with extended periods of chronic pain, the mind can become extremely stressed and fatigued, resulting in negative thoughts and emotions that can actually make your pain worse. Cognitive behavioral therapy seeks to develop new mental strategies and paths of thinking for dealing with chronic pain. While it may seem a bit far-fetched to some, this therapy as well as other mindfulness practices such as meditation and yoga have actually been shown to help ease pain and improve mental health.

The treatments and procedures above are only a few employed by the team here at miiSpine. In addition to the epidural injections, dry needling, and cognitive behavioral therapy for back pain, we may also recommend massage, prescription medication, hormonal treatment, and bracing. While surgery is sometimes the most effective approach for treating back pain, more often a combination of alternative treatments are effective. Dedicated to offering minimally invasive surgery options, miiSpine seeks to limit disruptions to your normal anatomy, which helps reduce recovery time and improve post-surgery quality of life. For more information, see our articles on simple back pain treatments, and trepidation surrounding back surgery.

If you are experiencing back pain that is not going away, you may benefit from seeking out qualified medical attention. Dr. Venu Vemuri, at miiSpine, is an award-winning physician focused on providing an innovative and comprehensive treatment approach towards all types of back conditions and pain. For additional information or to schedule an appointment, call the Louisville, Kentucky miiSpine office today at: (502) 242-6370.

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