Posted in: Health and Fitness

Chronic Pain: What are the Available Treatment Options?

Chronic pain epidural

Dealing with chronic pain may require more than conventional pain management treatment options. Whether the ache is from an injury, a surgical procedure, or illness, you may need a pain specialist to reveal the cause. Your Houston epidural specialist asserts that chronic pain may lead to other health complications. If you have persistent back pain, here are ways to help deal with it.

Get to Know the Cause

Most adults will experience back pain at some point in life, but the severity and duration may determine the type of treatment options to choose from. If the back pain does not go away after a few days, you need to seek medical intervention. Most people use over-the-counter medications to treat the problem, but your doctor may prescribe stronger medicines after diagnosis when this fails.

An Epidural for Chronic Pain Management

An epidural is a pain-relieving medication administered through injection to the area around the spinal cord. The drug contains cortisone and a numbing anesthetic. The medication’s effects may be felt immediately as the anesthetic starts working, while the steroid may take a few days. Cortisone offers long term relief from the pain. However, you may require multiple injections for the treatment to be effective.

Epidurals are commonly used during childbirth to numb the pain, but this is not the only way they can be useful. If all other back pain treatment options have been unsuccessful, the doctor may suggest an epidural. However, tests and further diagnosis are required to ascertain whether you are the right candidate.

When Epidural Injections May Not Be Recommended?

If you have any forms of infections, diabetes, allergies, especially to anesthesia, blood clotting issues, or do not have chronic pain, you cannot have an epidural. If other treatment options have not been exhausted, a pain specialist may choose not to administer the epidural.

If you are the right candidate, the injection may be administered at your doctor’s office. You may feel sore or numb for a few days, but afterward, the effects of the drug may be evident. It may take up to 5 days for the pain to completely go away. You should rest on the first day of the injection, but if you feel better afterward, you may go back to work, although you should not overwork yourself.

Because the epidural only manages the pain, it is crucial to determine the cause of the back pain. If it is due to an injury, you may need ample time to rest and heal. A dislocated disc may need further treatment options. Sometimes, the pain may be a result of inactivity or straining the back too much. Also, poor diet choices, stress, and anxiety may lead to back pain.

Taking care of yourself may offer long time solutions to the pain. Exercise, eating the right foods, and meditation are all effective in preventing and treating back pain. The less strain you put on your back, the faster the pain will go away. If you lift large or heavy objects, make sure you do not put the strain on your back.

If you have chronic back pain, do not suffer in silence. Reach out to your specialist today to learn about the available treatment options.