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What’s the best way to treat a herniated disk?

A herniated disk is a serious medical concern that can impact many areas of your life. In addition to the pain and discomfort, this injury may make it impossible to do your job.

Fortunately, there are many ways to treat a herniated disk, including the following:

  • Medication: For example, muscle relaxers and over-the-counter pain medications are often recommended. This isn't typically a long-term solution, but it can provide short-term relief.
  • Physical therapy: If your pain doesn't subside, your doctor may suggest physical therapy. This can improve range of motion, strengthen your back and neck muscles and help prevent a similar injury in the future.
  • Surgery: It's not always required to treat a herniated disk, but there are several reasons why it may be necessary. Surgery can help if you have difficulty walking or standing, weakness or numbness. The most common surgical procedure is a discectomy, as this allows your doctor to remove the protruding portion of the damaged disk.
  • Alternative medicine: This includes yoga, massage, acupuncture and chiropractic care. Discuss all these options with your doctor to ensure that it doesn't get in the way of other treatments.

With so many ways to treat a herniated disk, you should be able to take care of this injury in a timely manner.

If you suffered your injury on the job, report the incident to your employer and share your diagnosis with them. You may find that you're unable to return to work, thus leading you to file a workers' compensation claim. If you're entitled to this money, you should take advantage.

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