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Five lifestyle changes you can make to treat facet disease

Facet disease is a form of arthritis that occurs in the facet joints of the spine, which normally allow the vertebrae in the spine to bend and twist freely. The facet joints are relied on daily to help the spine function, and after many years of use, the cartilage in the joints can begin to wear away. If this creates a situation where bones rub against bones, inflammation and stiffness can develop. Another potential byproduct is the formation of bone spurs, which could come in contact with a nearby nerve root or the spinal cord, producing even more symptoms that will likely cause the patient to seek facet disease treatment.

Treating facet disease through behavioral changes

If you are undergoing treatment for facet disease, there are a variety of lifestyle modifications you can make that could improve your overall spine health and potentially help reduce your symptoms. Options include:

  1. Losing excess weight — to reduce the strain on your spine
  2. Avoiding frequent bending or heavy lifting — which could worsen your condition
  3. Being cognizant of your posture — so your spine rests in less stressful positions
  4. Avoiding tobacco use — to prevent further degeneration of your spine
  5. Staying away from high-impact sports — which often strain the spine

Additional conservative facet disease treatment options that your physician might recommend to help manage your symptoms include anti-inflammatory medications, physical therapy, hot/cold therapy and periods of rest. Many individuals also incorporate alternative treatments such as chiropractic manipulation, yoga, Pilates, massage therapy and acupuncture into their treatment regimens.

When nonsurgical treatment fails

If you’ve made lifestyle changes and attempted other conservative and alternative facet disease treatment options for several weeks or even months and your symptoms have continued, you might need to consider your surgical options. While your physician might suggest open spine surgery, you may want to consider minimally invasive surgery at USA Spine Care. Our minimally invasive procedures are a safer and effective alternative to open neck or back surgery.^

If you would like additional information about the outpatient procedures we offer as treatment for facet disease and other degenerative spinal conditions, contact USA Spine Care today. We can provide you with a no-cost MRI review* to help determine if you’re a candidate for our procedures.

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