Back pain is one of the most common health problems reported in the United States today. It’s even been estimated that 80% of Americans will end up dealing with back pain at some stage in their lives. There are several factors that can cause back pain, with lumbar facet joint pain being a common problem. This condition is also referred to as Facet Syndrome.
There are a variety of treatment options for the condition, including acupuncture for back pain.
Lumbar Facet Joint Pain Treatment
The treatment for this condition involves the attempt to break the recurring, irregular pain cycles. There are numerous treatment options provided to manage facet joint pain, including non-surgical (acupuncture for back pain, etc.) and surgical. Non-surgical options are typically the first line of treatment. If the facet joint pain problem is chronic, more invasive approaches may be recommended.
The majority of conservative lumbar facet joint pain treatment involves soft tissue massage, and manipulation of the affected area to help correct posture. Physical therapy, chiropractic’s, and osteopathic clinicians are commonly used to address constricted, painful facet joints to help reestablish normal motion. Conservative, non-invasive treatments including physical therapy, hot/cold therapy, transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS) and pain medication, are typically recommended initially to help relieve pain. Anti-inflammatory medications are also prescribed at times to decrease inflammation. In some cases, muscle relaxers are also prescribed to reduce local muscle spasms. A lot of patients prefer to deal facet disease symptoms using alternative, more holistic, treatments like acupuncture for pain relief.
More Invasive Treatments
When conservative treatments fail to work, medial branch blocks applying steroid medications or facet joint injections are often used to localize and minimize pain. These procedures are typically performed in an outpatient setting. If the pain is resolved or temporarily improved, addition treatments like radiofrequency ablation may be recommended as well.
Acupuncture for Back Pain – Lumber Facet Joint Pain
Acupuncture is an ancient form of traditional Chinese medicine, based on the idea of Qi (“Chee”). It is believed that Qi is the life energy that flows throughout the body in specific meridians (channels). When “meridians” are blocked, Qi becomes imbalanced, leading to health issues says Samantha Jacobs a CT Acupuncturist. Before the acupuncturist treats a patient experiencing lumbar facet joint pain, they’ll thoroughly review the patient’s medical history along with taking pulse readings. If the patient is qualified to receive treatment, they’ll be asked to lie down on a massage table. Then, the acupuncturist will insert sterilized, ultra-thin steel needles into specific points along the back and neck, wherever pain is the most intense. In most cases, treatment will need to be performed several more times to alleviate the pain over the long term. While it is still unclear exactly how acupuncture for back pain works, it is believed that inserting the needled close to nerve roots increases blood flow, stimulating the body to release endorphins, natures natural pain reliever.
In conclusion, Acupuncture for back pain relief and chronic lumbar facet joint pain is an option that is worth considering as a complementary treatment or for those that haven’t found relief with other treatment methods.