A herniated disc is a serious and painful injury that can change your life in an instant. If you have reason to believe you've suffered this injury, immediate medical treatment can go a long way in helping you make a full recovery.
There are many ways to treat a herniated disc, so you need to take the guidance of your medical team. Some of the most common strategies include:
- Rest and medication: This may be possible if the injury isn't too severe.
- Therapy: If your pain doesn't subside within a few weeks of injury, therapy may be required to help minimize future problems and regain full range of motion.
- Surgery: Often a last resort, a herniated disc may require surgery if you're suffering from symptoms such as difficulty walking or standing, weakness, numbness or loss of bladder or bowel control.
There are also various alternative forms of medicine to help alleviate the pain associated with a herniated disc, such as massage, chiropractic care, acupuncture and yoga.
Back and neck injuries are extremely common, with many people avoiding treatment because they assume the problem will resolve on its own. Unfortunately, with a herniated disc, this is very rarely the case.
If you injure your back on the job, stay where you are and wait for help to arrive. Don't continue to do your job, as this could result in more trouble.
Once you receive a medical diagnosis, share as much information as possible with your employer. If you can't return to work in the near future, filing a claim for workers' compensation benefits may be in your best interest.