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Physical Therapy Treatment For Herniated Discs

The aim of physical therapy for herniated discs is to reduce discomfort due to inflammation and pain, followed by improving muscle strength and flexibility.

A program of physical therapy for herniated discs normally occurs over six weeks, twice or three times a week, and should only be conducted by trained, and licensed physical therapists.

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Types of physical therapy

Physical therapy for herniated discs is generally of two kinds: passive and active. Passive physiotherapy is used to relax the body and muscle tissue. Active physiotherapy boosts body functioning in the areas of posture, joint movement, flexibility, posture, core strength.

Passive physiotherapy is normally the first approach as the patient is initially experiencing much soreness and pain. A combination of the following treatments is often applied based on the type of injury and the doctor's recommendations.

Active physical therapy for herniated discs occurs once the pain has been stabilized. It is done in a fitness-like environment where the therapist will train the patient on certain machines such as upright bicycles and muscle-exercising contraptions.

Deep Tissue Massage: This method involves applying pressure to alleviate muscle spasms and deep tissue tension, conditions that hinder smooth function of the muscle.

Hydrotherapy: As the name suggests, this method uses water. A patient is immersed in a pool of heated water, a whirlpool bath or warm shower. Hydrotherapy relieves pain and relaxes the muscles.

Traction: This therapy involves careful tugging of the back bones to counter the effects of gravity and minimize the disc hernia (bulging). It is performed on the lumbar or cervical vertebrae.

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