Is Spinal Decompression Therapy Right For You?

Posted on: 25 June 2017


Spinal compression is a painful and debilitating condition where your spinal cord disks are unable to support the weight of your entire spine, causing your back to compress as a result. The condition can also be caused by a spinal injury or a disease such as degenerative disk disease. You can also suffer from spinal compression due to your age, as your bones become more brittle and susceptible to breakage as you get older.

If you are awaiting a spinal compression treatment or surgery but still in massive pain, your doctor may prescribe you something called spinal decompression therapy. Spinal decompression therapy is the process of lengthening your spine to reduce pain and pressure via stretching, chiropractic techniques, and massage. Many patients have success with this type of treatment in addition to physical therapy and exercise, and it can work well for you as well. Here are things to consider before you undergo this type of treatment for your back pain.

Your ability to move

If your back pain leaves you entirely immobile due to pain or the pressure on your spine, then you will want to talk to a chiropractor, orthopedic surgeon, or your physical therapist to see how well decompression therapy will work for your spine. In some cases severe back pain needs to be treated with surgery to limit the amount of stress or permanent damage to the spine, however, decompression therapy can be used after surgery to help you heal more quickly.

The amount of pain you are in

Mild to moderate back pain can tolerate spinal decompression therapy very well. Lighter or more bearable pain is often a sign of less severe spinal damage to which spinal compression therapy is more responsive. Talk to your doctor about this alternative treatment if you:

  • have spinal pain not due to an injury
  • are able to treat your pain with over-the-counter medications
  • your back pain is not increasing

With observation from your doctor, spinal decompression therapy can be an excellent alternative treatment method for your back condition.

Your resistance to surgery

If you don't want to undergo surgery for your spinal decompression or you wish to forgo more intensive treatment, then spinal decompression therapy may be right for you. You can use this therapy to bring you comfort and back pain relief, and can even allow you to eliminate the need for surgery. Talk to your doctor to see if this option will work best for you and give your spine time to heal before making further decisions.

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