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Is Bed Rest Needed for All Spine Ailments?

Written by
Dr. Shakti A. Goel
and medically reviewed by iCliniq medical review team.

Published on Jan 08, 2019   -  1 min read


It is a common myth that bed rest is the treatment for all spine ailments. The current scenario and literature show that mobilization and activities may provide additional benefits to the patients than bed rest. However, personal consultation and customized exercises are required before coming to a conclusion.

Is Bed Rest Needed for All Spine Ailments?

Since times immemorial, spine surgery has seen a massive revolution. However, the myth of remaining on bed/ complete bed rest has existed since long. This myth is not only prevalent amongst the patients but also various physicians/practitioners.

Many times, a patient with back pain is advised to stay on the bed and take medicines. Recent advances have reported that many ailments of the back heal better when activities, good posture, and medicines are incorporated together along with physiotherapy.

There are a few exceptions to this, such as infections of the spine. In ailments like disc prolapse with intact neurology, or back pain due to postural issues, it is recommended that the patient continues walking for at least 4 km a day along with customized exercises and medicines. As the muscles become stronger, the medicines are tapered, and exercises are made a part of the daily routine.

Another common query that exists amongst patients is the use of a lumbar belt. The belts have shown to be of little benefit to the patients (in the long run) due to their ability to cause loss of power of abdominal muscles. Instead of wearing a belt from outside, the patients should work on core-strengthening exercises and make a belt of their own with the muscles.

It is, however, recommended to consult a spine surgeon physically to know about the customized exercises which are recommended along with the protocol for the use of a belt. Gone are the days when mobility restriction was considered the best treatment.

Aristotle had stated 'Life is a movement and movement is life.' Despite being late, this saying finally holds true!

Last reviewed at:
08 Jan 2019  -  1 min read




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