The spine specialists at Kelsey-Seybold Spine Center often include physical therapy in nonsurgical treatment plans for patients with spinal conditions. Four weeks of physical therapy is typically suggested as an initial treatment option before moving on to other types of treatment.
Targeted physical therapy is effective in decreasing back pain, increasing mobility, and preventing further spinal issues for most patients.
Depending on your condition and level of pain, your care team may recommend the following types of physical therapy:
- Passive therapy involves methods that don't require the patient to perform any physical activities. Examples would include heat or ice applications and electrical stimulation to relax muscles and prepare them for further methods.
- Active therapy focuses on the patient performing targeted exercises and stretching. Proper stretching helps increase range of motion and relieve spasms. Dynamic stabilization exercises involve strengthening the muscles around the spine using exercise balls, balancing machines, and other methods.
- Core strengthening involves specific exercises to strengthen the muscles that support the spine within the abdomen and lower back. Exercises may include abdominal crunches, hyperextensions of the lower back, and forward bends.
- Aquatic or water therapy is typically used when the patient doesn't have the strength or mobility to perform exercises outside of the pool. Water minimizes the effect of gravity, making movement easier.
Physical therapy has shown to be a tremendous help to our Kelsey-Seybold Spine Center patients throughout treatment. Strengthening and stretching the muscles around the spine works to take stress off problem areas. However, if the exercises are not continued after physical therapy ends, the pain is likely to return because the muscles are no longer being trained. For this reason, our spine specialists provide patients with an at-home maintenance program.
Contact the Kelsey-Seybold Spine Center in Houston to learn more about how a physical therapy program could help alleviate pain associated with your spinal condition.