A herniated disc, otherwise known as ruptured, bulging, or slipped disc, is a spine condition that commonly causes neck, back, and leg pain. Surprisingly, most people don’t develop symptoms of a herniated disc. Those who develop symptoms get better on their own or with some home-care measures and nonsurgical therapies.
Most people believe that only medications (a type of nonsurgical treatment) can treat herniated discs. Let’s talk about some common medications used for a herniated disc, if only these medications are enough to cure your herniated disc, and where you can go in Rochester Hills, MI, for effective management of Herniated Disc.
Common Medications Used for Herniated Disc Treatment
Herniated disc treatment depends on your need and the severity of your symptoms. Typically, you use over-the-counter medications first and then switch to prescription medication if OTC medications fail to do their work – pain relief. Common over-the-counter medications for herniated discs are:
Acetaminophen. This is typically used as the first line of defense for almost all pains. While acetaminophen (Tylenol) is great for pain relief and fever treatment, it doesn’t reduce inflammation.
Nonsteroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs. There are many classes of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) that work by reducing pain as well as inflammation. Commonly used NSAIDs for herniated disc treatment are ibuprofen and naproxen.
Prescription-only medications are the ones that your doctor prescribes for your herniated disc symptoms. Commonly these are:
Muscle Relaxants. Muscle relaxants are prescribed to relieve the muscle spasms accompanied by a herniated disc.
Oral Steroids. Also known as corticosteroids, oral steroids are prescribed to reduce swelling. Because corticosteroids are associated with many side effects, these are prescribed for short-term use.
Opioids. Opioids or narcotic drugs are prescribed when your pain is severe. Opioids can be addictive, so they must be used with caution. Also, you may develop tolerance to opioid medications over time – that means your pain won’t go away with the same drug strength and need higher strength for adequate pain relief.
Anti-depressants. These prescription-only drugs work by blocking the pain signals from getting to your brain and increasing the body’s natural painkiller – endorphins. Anti-depressants also offer additional benefits, i.e., better sleep.
Medication Alone Aren’t Enough for Herniated Disc Treatment.
Medications aren’t a cure for your herniated disc. When the effect of medications wears off, you feel pain and discomfort again. Medications also pose serious side effects, especially when used for a long period, so you must ask your doctor’s advice before taking them.
Notably, even though medications can treat pain from a herniated disc, you shouldn’t solely rely on one non-surgical option, i.e., medications, for pain relief but you must also incorporate other nonsurgical therapies like physical therapy and exercises to yield the best results. These therapies improve blood circulation, reduce pressure on the affected nerves, improve overall function, and help you feel better.
Herniated Disc Treatment in Rochester Hills, MI
For comprehensive care for your herniated disc, visit the leading orthopedic doctor in Southeast Michigan, Dr. Bradley Ahlgren, who will effectively diagnose your spine problem and offer both surgical and nonsurgical treatments. He is committed to providing the people in Southeast Michigan with highly personalized, comprehensive, and evidence-based care for their orthopedic issues.
To arrange a consultation with Dr. Bradley Ahlgren, call us today at (248) 215-8080, or fill out our appointment request form.