Thoracic Back Pain Treatment
A lot of stress is consistently applied to the thoracic region of the body since it holds some of the most vital organs for human life.
Although the spine is designed to bear normal, everyday stress, there are situations, such as injuries, that can put a strain on its capacity to heal and recover. Symptoms of thoracic back discomfort are common responses to such pressure.
How can people get relief from discomfort in their upper back (thoracic)? Medication, physical therapy, and self-care treatments are the three primary means by which thoracic discomfort can be effectively reduced or eliminated.
They are typically supplemented with further self-care measures by the patient or, in extreme cases, surgical intervention.
How Prevalent Is Thoracic Spine Pain?
When asked how many respondents had back discomfort, researchers reported a range of between 4% and 72%.
The fact is that if various polls aren't asked the same question in the same way, they will get different results. Female teenagers have a greater tendency to experience thoracic back pain than their men. Backpacks are to fault, without a doubt.
What Should You Do If You Suffer From Thoracic Back Pain?
Addressing the underlying cause of thoracic back pain is the most effective method of treatment. At Restoration Physical Therapy, we also follow the same method. Because of the wide variety of causes for back pain, from muscular strain to tumors, doctors sometimes struggle to settle on a single course of therapy.
That's why people with thoracic back discomfort should always seek an accurate diagnosis before trying anything new. After making an accurate diagnosis, the doctor will often suggest one of three treatments:
Thoracic back pain can be alleviated, to some extent, with the use of over-the-counter medications such as pain relievers, anti-inflammatory pharmaceuticals, and topical creams.
If the pain can be traced back to an objectively observable source, such as muscular tension or overexertion, then it may be possible to alleviate it with relatively little effort and experience rapid healing.
Patients using the medicine for thoracic back pain should exercise caution due to the risk of addiction and other negative effects. Some drugs are designed to block symptoms but do little to address the root problem.
Physical therapy may be an effective method of treating trigger points and injuries, especially when applied to isolated regions such as the neck, upper body, shoulders, and chest.
Physical therapy's adaptability means that it can be recommended for a wide variety of thoracic symptoms and modified to account for particularly sensitive areas, such as the neck.
Consistency is the most important aspect of physical treatment. Therapy is most effective when it is consistently practiced, and any lapses or gaps between sessions can reverse much of the improvement made in previous sessions and may even aggravate the condition in certain cases.
Physical therapists must be very competent and informed in their field to protect their patients from harm.
When the primary treatment for thoracic back pain (physical therapy or medicine) is complete, the patient may be able to supplement and reinforce the benefits of the first treatment at home.
These strategies often include modifying the patient's daily routine to prepare for and adapt to the new normal that will exist once the initial therapy is complete.
Only after consulting with your doctor should you try any sort of self-care home remedy. If you don't know what you're doing, treatments like hot and cold therapy might prolong tingling or numbness, and poor posture when exercising can make your symptoms worse.
That's why it's so important for patients to keep their scheduled appointments while taking care of themselves at home with prescribed treatments.
Patients should never diverge from the recommendations of their doctors, especially when it comes to the spine, which requires a longer healing period than other parts of the body.
Self-medication and other treatments not recommended by a doctor might worsen existing symptoms and perhaps cause more damage.
Lifestyle Changes to Minimize Thoracic Back Pain
There are certain lifestyle changes that may help reduce the discomfort associated with thoracic back pain. In this section, we will discuss five such lifestyle changes that have been proven to provide relief from thoracic back pain.
Maintain Good Posture
Maintaining good posture is essential for reducing the amount of stress placed on the spine, which in turn reduces the likelihood of developing thoracic back pain.
To do this, individuals should strive to keep their shoulder blades pulled slightly inward while they stand and sit tall with their chests out.
Additionally, they should practice keeping their chin tucked in and their ears in line with their shoulders when possible.
When carrying heavy objects or participating in physical activities, individuals should bend at the knees instead of at the waist in order to protect their spine.
Regular stretching can help to restore flexibility and mobility to the muscles around the spine as well as alleviate any tightness or tension that may be causing pain.
Examples of stretches that can be performed include lunges and knee-to-chest holds. Additionally, yoga poses such as cobra and cat-cow can also be beneficial for those seeking relief from thoracic back pain.
If you have trouble stretching you can visit the Restoration Physical Therapy clinic in Media, PA.
Strengthen Core Muscles
Having strong core muscles is important for providing support for the spine and preventing injury or deterioration due to strain or overuse.
Exercises such as planks, glute bridges, and crunches can all help strengthen these muscles as well as improve balance and stability throughout various movements throughout the day.
Additionally, practicing Pilates or using an exercise ball are also great ways to tone core muscles while increasing spinal mobility at the same time.
Reduce Stress Levels
Stress has been linked to several health issues, including muscle tension in areas like the neck, shoulders, and lower back - which can lead to thoracic back pain if left untreated.
Incorporating daily stress-management techniques such as deep breathing exercises or mindfulness meditation into one's routine can go a long way toward reducing muscular tension in these areas while helping one stay focused throughout the day.
Get Adequate Amounts of Sleep
Adequate amounts of sleep are necessary for maintaining proper health since it allows our bodies time to rest and recover from any physical activity we may have participated in during the day - including activities that could have led to thoracic back pain if done incorrectly.
Aiming for 7-9 hours of quality sleep each night is important for ensuring optimal wellness overall. You will also be able to prevent thoracic back pain symptoms at night.
Surgical Treatments for Thoracic Back Pain
There are several different types of surgery that can be used to treat thoracic back pain. These include spinal fusion, discectomy, laminectomy, foraminotomy, vertebroplasty, or kyphoplasty.
Each type of surgery has different indications depending on the underlying cause of the patient’s symptoms and the extent to which their mobility is affected.
Benefits of Surgery for Thoracic Back Pain
The primary benefit of surgical intervention is that it can provide relief from chronic back pain that has not been relieved through other treatments such as physical therapy or medications.
Additionally, it can help improve mobility by correcting any structural abnormalities that may be causing nerve compression or impingement in the spine area.
By reducing nerve compression, patients may also experience decreased inflammation and swelling in their affected area, allowing them to move more freely with less discomfort.
Furthermore, corrective surgery can help prevent further damage to affected areas since it restores stability to a weakened spine which helps reduce the risk of reoccurrence of the same issue down the line.
Risks Associated with Thoracic Back Pain Surgery
As with any major medical procedure, there are inherent risks associated with surgery, such as infection and bleeding complications.
However, these risks can typically be managed effectively when precautions are taken during pre-operative planning and care is taken during every step of recovery.
Surgical intervention may also bring about nerve damage leading to temporary or permanent numbness in certain areas along with muscle weakness in some cases due to injury caused by invasive procedures.
Who Suffers From Thoracic Spine Pain?
Inconsistent results are found in surveys looking at the prevalence of thoracic spine pain. For example, one poll found that 4% of individuals had experienced thoracic spine discomfort, while another found that 72% of people have.
It appears to be more prevalent among young people, particularly teenage females. Backpacks, school chair height, and homework stress were all mentioned as potential causes of thoracic back pain. It seems to be connected to issues with mental health.
Furthermore, it appears to be widespread during the years between the early and late teen years. People experiencing thoracic back pain typically also suffer from other aches and pains and have trouble doing routine chores.
Thoracic back pain can be a debilitating condition that affects people of all ages. Treatment options vary and should always be discussed with your doctor first.
Depending on the severity, treatment may include physical therapy, exercise, medication, or even surgery. It is important to stay active but also avoid activities that will exacerbate the discomfort.
Additionally, it is important to remain mindful of posture and sleeping habits in order to promote healing and reduce pain. Working together with your physician is key to finding the best treatment for your individual needs.
If you have any questions relating to thoracic back pain, you can visit our Media, PA physical therapy clinic or contact us any time.