Many people delay canal stenosis treatment for as long as possible. While this is understandable — finding the time to see a physician can be difficult, and people often hope that the pain will go away on its own — it’s not necessarily the best course of action. The more quickly you start working through your treatment options, the more quickly you’ll be able to find relief. Plus, when it comes to lifestyle changes that can reduce the amount of stress that your spine has to bear, every day counts.
Signs that you should see a physician
If any of the following situations sound familiar, it might be time to talk with a physician about canal stenosis treatment:
- You find it difficult to make it through the workday without getting distracted by neck or back pain.
- Simple activities that you once took for granted, like bending down to pick up objects off the floor, now feel increasingly difficult or even require assistance.
- You’ve thought about canceling or skipping out on social events because of overwhelming pain.
- You thought that you had found a strategy for managing your pain (for instance, taking an ibuprofen every morning), but techniques that used to work are no longer effective.
- You have neurological complications like muscle weakness, numbness or tingling that are not going away on their own.
What you can expect from your visitTypically, when you consult with a physician regarding canal stenosis treatment, he or she will ask you about your symptoms, your lifestyle and what sort of treatment you’ve been using at home. A physical exam is usually part of this visit, as well.
From there, your physician may recommend a variety of canal stenosis treatment options to alleviate your symptoms. You might be referred to a physical therapist, given a list of over-the-counter medications to use or given a prescription for painkillers or muscle relaxants. You might also be advised to exercise more, quit smoking or lose excess weight that could potentially make your back pain worse.
Surgery is not usually brought up in the earliest stages of the canal stenosis treatment process, although it might be an option for certain individuals who don’t achieve the desired results from nonsurgical treatment. If you’re just starting treatment now, however, that’s a discussion to have at a later date.
At USA Spine Care, we perform minimally invasive surgery and welcome patients who have not been able to manage their canal stenosis symptoms through conservative measures. If nonsurgical canal stenosis treatment has not worked for you, contact us today to find out if you are a candidate for one of our outpatient procedures.