Call 911 if the person has a slipped disk and:
- Loses bladder or bowel control
- Has weakness in the arms or legs
- Has numbness in the inner, upper part of the thighs
1. Treat Pain
- Changing positions or shifting posture may reduce immediate discomfort. For example, laying on the back, with feet on a chair and knees at a 90-degree angle, can sometimes be quite comfortable for back problems.
- Apply a cold compress several times a day for no more than 20 minutes at a time.
- Give nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medication (such as Motrin, Aleve, Advil or Naprosyn).
2. Have the Person Rest
- Bed rest for a day or two may help, but no longer than that; it is important to become active again sooner rather than later.
- The person should avoid activities such as lifting or pushing.
3. See a Health Care Provider
- All slipped disks should be evaluated.
4. Follow Up
- The health care provider may recommend muscle relaxants, anti-inflammatory medications, injections of pain reliever, acupuncture, or physical therapy.
- Most people feel better within six weeks.
- In some cases, back surgery is necessary.