Slipped disc

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    Sep 01, 2011 8:39 PM GMT
    Hey guys,
    I recently got two slipped discs. After a few weeks now the constant, yet not very bad, pain is getting on my nerves. I can't sit very long and got to walk or stand most of the time. I try to get back to dancing, which i gotta take slow and swim a lot. Other than that I'm out of ideas, what to do.
    It's summer break, so I got a lot of free time from my study. So guys, what activities would you recommend?
  • dionysus

    Posts: 420

    Sep 01, 2011 10:21 PM GMT
    6 weeks of no physical activity.
    make sure you are sleeping on your back or belly, not on your side.
    in addition, use heat compresses to warm the area (they sell them for pretty good, i said heat compress, NOT icy hot) apply to the area for a period of 15 minutes
    perform back extension stretches:
    lay on your back, feet out flat
    bring your right foot to your right buttocks, touching the right knee with your left hand.
    slowly draw your knee to your left side while maintaining a gentle gaze to your right.
    hold for 10-15 seconds.
    switch sides and repeat 3 times over.

    ice immediately for a period of 15-20 minutes

    continue not performing intense physical labor (this includes swimming unless you're just walking gently through the water which would be beneficial)

    w3rd.
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    Sep 02, 2011 12:07 AM GMT
    Are they slipped, or herniated?

    A year ago I had two herniated disks (verified via MRI) and couldn't sit for a little over two months. During that time I walked everywhere, as often as possible. I also rigged up a contraption where I could stand up and comfortably use the computer. I'd stand at the computer for an hour or so at a time, then walk around town for a couple hours, then come home and take a nap...and the cycle continued till I got where I could drive to the chiropractor.

    After three weeks of chiropractic treatment, I was finally able to go back to work. Now, a year later, I still feel it if I sit for more than 3-4 hours at a time. Extended road trips (and possibly even international flights) are permanently cut out of my future.
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    Sep 02, 2011 12:09 AM GMT
    ive been dealing with this for over two years, and ill tell you now, you want to nip this in the bud. i highly recommend getting physical therapy, and in addition, find stretches and core strengthening exercises. the best thing you can do for yourself is not to aggrivate it and actively work on supporting and stabilizing your back with your core muscles
  • LJay

    Posts: 11612

    Sep 02, 2011 12:13 AM GMT
    I think what you can do is talk with the physical therapist and get a list of activities. Several months spent doing exactly as you should will pay off.
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    Sep 02, 2011 11:21 AM GMT
    Hi again and thanks for the responses.

    @caspervann: Staying active and keep on moving is what both my orthopedist and my physiotherapist told me. I will try that exercise though. Thanks!

    @Paul: It is a bit hard for me to say in english. One disc is torn and lost its liquid core, the other is just bulging. They might both press on the nerves though.

    I got the therapy covered with an orthopedist and physiotherapy, and it was all verified through MRI. Both told me to stay active and that I'd have to look for painless activities myself, as it varies from case to case. When the physiotherapst think's I'm over the worst, I'm gonna attend a class for preventive back pain gymnastics (best translation I could find for R├╝ckenschule...). I just need more than walking and swimming, but must not sit or carry heavy things.
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    Sep 02, 2011 11:31 AM GMT
    A few people mentioned stretching and yeah check it out it's called traction. It'll help relieve the pressure on the discs in your back. It's AMAZING! I had a nerve getting pinched in my neck and the traction really helped relieve the pain.

    And do what everyone else has stated already. Heat/ice, lay flat on back or front. And time. You'll be on realjock alot killing time. lol
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    Sep 02, 2011 11:35 AM GMT
    caspervann said
    make sure you are sleeping on your back or belly, not on your side.


    Be careful of this advice! Everyone is different, but my neurosurgeon, physical therapist, and chiropractor all stressed that anyone with disc issues in their lower back area (L4,L5, in particular) should NEVER sleep on their back/stomach, but always on their side. This certainly holds for me, because even laying on my back for short periods of time makes mine hurt.

    14 years ago, my pain was so severe that my foot and leg started going totally numb, so I had surgery. I had no complications and I now lift heavy with few restrictions (squats are okay, but no heavy deadlifts). Still, I wish that I'd learned about the McKenzie Back Exercises before deciding on surgery. I still use them from time to time, and many people use them to avoid surgery. Here is a description, but there are many others:

    http://www.arshavirshomepage.com/Arshavirs_Homepage/McKenzie_Back_Exercises.html
  • dionysus

    Posts: 420

    Sep 02, 2011 9:59 PM GMT
    i define physical activity as strenuous. swimming isn't really physical, but conditional icon_smile.gif
  • dionysus

    Posts: 420

    Sep 02, 2011 10:00 PM GMT
    despite what olivia newton john has told us
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    Sep 02, 2011 10:22 PM GMT
    caed6 saidive been dealing with this for over two years, and ill tell you now, you want to nip this in the bud. i highly recommend getting physical therapy, and in addition, find stretches and core strengthening exercises. the best thing you can do for yourself is not to aggrivate it and actively work on supporting and stabilizing your back with your core muscles


    This. The physical therapy stretches were the most effective for me, after spending $3k on xrays, chiropractor fees etc. I had a herniated disc which felt like a penny raking across my sciatic nerve whenever I went to sit, stand, brush my teeth, get out of my car. The stretches loosen the muscle and tissue allowing some of the swelling to drain but also releasing some of the pressure, allowing the disc to slip back in line, slowly. The chiropractor helped a little but I think he was trying to "top" me with some of the stretches lol.
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    Sep 05, 2011 11:25 AM GMT
    Normally I try and support educated medical opinions, but when it involves your nervous system you should play it safe. You don't want to be manipulating the disc without full knowledge of what the extent of the injury is and the proper technique for physical therapy would be.

    Loss of liquid from the disc? The only thing I can think of is that would be Digenerative Disc Disease but you are a bit young for that. (You are from germany so, degenerative Bandscheibenerkrankung?)

    I definitely second physical therapy x 1,000. You need a professional to work with you to encourage the disc to re-align if it is indeed out of place. If its DDD then you may need to consider some lifestyle changes.

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    Sep 05, 2011 12:04 PM GMT
    Look into an inversion table along with the other suggestions. They can help stretch the vertebrae apart to aid in the disks realigning where need be. Acupuncture may also open up some channels to aid in healing. I was a skeptic until i tried it on some sciatic issues that were persistent for a month and with a big lifting meet coming up, i was desperate. It worked like a miracle for my issues. Within 3 days about 80% of the pain had dissipated.
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    Sep 05, 2011 12:49 PM GMT
    I have 1 bulged and 1 perforated disc. Using a foam roller helps me a lot. I try to spend 30 minutes a night stretching my lower back (lying on the roller and pushing the pelvis into the air) usually in front of the tv. It might help you too. ymmv.

    good luck!