A bulging disc in your back — especially in your lower back — can cause pain that makes it difficult to stand, bend or walk. Even sitting or sleeping can be uncomfortable, causing a downward spiral of health issues as fatigue and anxiety take hold.
But a bulging disc in your lower back isn’t necessarily a permanent condition — and even if it for you, there are things you can do to reduce or eliminate the pain.
Understanding The Pain
Today, a bulging disc is often considered a symptom of a back problem caused by overexertion, inactivity or an injury. Many health professionals no longer consider it a cause of pain but rather something that happens along with nerve, muscle and joint issues.
Fortunately, back pain issues aren’t always permanent, as some experts wrongly thought for decades. And surgery isn’t required to alleviate many kinds of discomfort. Instead, you can take a variety of other steps that will help reduce the pain. It may also naturally lessen over time as the bulging disc in your back gradually returns to a more natural shape.
The bulge is caused by a buildup of fluid inside the disc or a reduction in the amount of fluid in the disc that causes it to slip slightly out of place. To be sure you have a bulging disc, you’ll need an x-ray or MRI. Remember, however, that some occasional bulging is completely normal.
In any case, stiffness and some pain in the mornings and after periods of inactivity can persist long after the most critical symptoms subside.
Alleviating Your Back Pain
You can do a number of things to reduce or eliminate your back pain, including:
1. Rest after an injury. If your pain comes on suddenly, it’s likely the result of sudden change in a disc caused by an injury. Resting for several days can dramatically reduce symptoms.
2. Restrict lifting for weeks or months. Lifting is hard on bulging discs, especially in your lower back, so avoiding lifting, jumping and prolonged sitting can allow joints and discs to heal.
3. Try to lose weight. Excess weight puts strain on your back in the same way that lifting or jumping does. Consider a weight loss supplement, if necessary, and switching to a lower fat, plant-based diet. Take vitamins too.
4. Find exercises that help you. Stretching and gentle workouts using equipment that supports your lower back can really help. Arching your back, laying flat and gently stretching and pushing your back flat against the floor can be effective too.
5. Walk. Walking is a low-impact exercise that can do a lot to rearrange the fluid in your back, reducing pain and increasing blood flow, making you feel better and less sluggish overall.
Living with pain from a bulging disc in your lower back can be frustrating because the pain can keep you from your daily activities and make it difficult to get the rest you need to continue the healing process.
But you don’t have to suffer. By taking the right actions, using the right products and understanding that your pain doesn’t have to be a permanent part of your life, you can get on the road to fewer symptoms and a better life.
Back pain from a bulging disc in your back is a nuisance, for sure, but it doesn’t have to be debilitating.