If you suffer from chronic back pains and constantly awaiting your next Lutz chiropractor appointment, it could be a sign of the presence of facet syndrome. Facet syndrome is a type of back pain involving the degeneration of the joints in the vertebrae leading to pain at the back during movements. Degeneration of the joints in the vertebrae may be caused by a variety of reasons such as wear and tear of the disc, arthritis, direct physical injury to the spine and overuse injury from acrobatics, gymnastics and the like.
Facet syndrome causes one of the chronically-debilitating back pains described as a dull ache in the back. This pain may also be felt in the neck and is aggravated by movement such as bending. Since the spine is also held responsible for moving the torso, facet syndrome may also lead to limited range of motion and stiffening of the affected region of the spine. All these symptoms make facet syndrome a disabling condition prompting for appropriate treatments to help the client achieve better sense of spinal well-being.
Facet syndrome has the advantage of being manageable by various treatment options. Depending on the severity of the back problem, Facet syndrome may be managed through the following treatment modalities:
• Conservative approach
The conservative approach is an effective remedy for managing mild forms of facet syndrome. Conservative approaches may involve the use of heat therapy to relieve muscle strains, use of massage to promote muscle relaxation around the affected joint, stretching exercises to enhance flexibility of the vertebral joints and employment of specific sleeping positions to avoid worsening of the Facet syndrome. However, conservative approaches are only short-term and symptomatic so other modalities should be used to directly address the spinal problem.
• Physical Therapy
Physical therapy is a common treatment for facet syndrome. This option is especially effective in keeping the joints in the spine more flexible; thereby, improving the range of motion of the individual.
Medications are often prescribed to relieve back pains effectively and efficiently.
Another treatment option for facet syndrome is the use of cold temperatures to reduce pain. Just like the conservative approaches, cryotherapy is only symptomatic and cannot effectively cure the underlying cause of Facet syndrome.
Surgery is the last resort for facet syndrome that does not respond to more conventional approaches. Most cases of facet syndrome do not require surgery so talking to a health care provider is optimal to determine whether surgery is needed or not. Surgery is recommended for emergency conditions such as the presence of loss of bladder or bowel control that may be due to compression of the cauda equina in the sacral region.
• Alternative options
Aside from the above conventional treatment options, various alternative approaches may also be sought. These include:
• Chiropractic care- Chiropractors are trained in addressing
various musculoskeletal conditions including facet syndrome. Chiropractic care may involve muscle or spinal manipulation to directly address the spinal problem. Massages, stretching exercises as well as overall lifestyle modification may also be recommended by the chiropractor.
• Pilates and yoga- These options may also be used as a technique for improving the integrity of the spine.
Facet syndrome can be an acute or chronic disabling condition and the prompt implementation of interventions is very crucial to help the individual return to its regular activities.