Ease Stenosis Pain
Spinal stenosis causes pain by putting pressure on the spinal cord or nerves. You can help ease the pain through posture, rest, medications, or sometimes surgery. As your doctor suggests a treatment option, track your pain to see how it works.
Try the Spine Flex
Flexing your spine may help ease pain from spinal stenosis. Here are 2 ways to flex.
* Lean slightly forward from the waist while you walk.
* Lie on your back, with your knees drawn to the chest.
Both positions enlarge spaces in your spine and may help relieve pressure on the spinal cord or nerves.
Stenosis Pain Meds
In some cases of spinal stenosis, inflammation can contribute to pressure on nerves. If that's the case, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medicines (NSAIDs) may help. Consider trying over-the-counter anti-inflammatories like ibuprofen, aspirin, or naproxen. Track in your journal when you take them and assess how quickly and effectively they help your pain. Make sure you tell your doctor what you take and the dose so you both can look out for side effects.
Stenosis Rest Plan
Sometimes resting for a limited time can help ease stenosis pain; however, resting too long may make pain worse. After resting, doctors suggest low-impact aerobic activity such as bicycling.
Surgery may help people when spinal stenosis causes persistent pain despite other treatment or is disabling. Surgery is performed on involved areas of the spine. One common procedure, called decompressive laminectomy, helps enlarge the spinal canal to help relieve nerve pressure. Surgery helps reduce pain in many people, but some people get worse or stay the same. If you have severe spinal stenosis, ask your doctor if you should consider surgery.
Try to prevent spinal compression fractures naturally. Ask your doctor if you should take calcium and vitamin D supplements. And if so, ask how much and how often. Do gentle weight-bearing exercises 2 or 3 times a week. If you have osteoporosis, you may need prescription bone-building meds such as bisphosphonates. Commonly prescribed bisphosphonates include Actonel and Atelvia (risedronate), Boniva (ibandronate), and Fosamax (alendronate). Ask your doctor.