Skip to content

    Pain Management Health Center

    Font Size

    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. Check with your doctor first if you have any medical problems or take any other medicines. 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. Never give aspirin to anyone under the age of 19 as it can cause Reye's syndrome.

    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.

    Stenosis Surgery

    Surgery may help people when spinal stenosis is causing persistent pain despite other treatment, is causing nerve damage, 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.

    Fracture Prevention

    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). Other medicines are also available. Ask your doctor.

    WebMD Medical Reference

    Today on WebMD

    pain in brain and nerves
    Top causes and how to find relief.
    knee exercise
    8 exercises for less knee pain.
    acupuncture needles in woman's back
    How it helps arthritis, migraines, and dental pain.
    chronic pain
    Get personalized tips to reduce discomfort.
    illustration of nerves in hand
    lumbar spine
    Woman opening window
    Man holding handful of pills
    Woman shopping for vegetables
    Sore feet with high heel shoes
    acupuncture needles in woman's back
    man with a migraine