Holistic herniated disc treatment utilizes non-harmful care practices that treat the whole person, rather than just focusing on the intervertebral abnormality. While holistic care is wonderfully enlightened in some ways, it virtually always falls short of providing a cure for any actual structural disc abnormality, although it can provide substantial general health benefits. In cases where holistic care does accomplish a cure for disc pain, the diagnosis was most likely incorrect, explaining why the spinal irregularity remains, even though the pain has been eliminated.
We are put in a difficult position when patients write to us asking for a holistic cure for their herniated disc. If the disc is the actual culprit for pain, very few holistic methods of care will provide relief, since they will do nothing to act on the intervertebral anatomy. However, since we already know that the vast majority of diagnosed disc abnormalities are innocent of causing pain, and therefore that pain is being generated by some other process, we have compiled a list of potentially effective holistic and partially holistic remedies for back and neck pain syndromes that have been unjustly blamed on a disc protrusion.
This essay discusses the benefits and limitations of the most common holistic methods of care used to treat herniated discs.
We now know that when many people write to us for advice, they might misunderstand the definition of holistic as being “all-natural”. This is incorrect. There are many natural disc pain treatments that are certainly not holistic. So before proceeding with our treatment recommendations, let’s clarify what holistic really means.
Holistic implies that care is rendered towards improving general health, thereby allowing the body to organically address problems from within. Furthermore, therapies will be directed at improving every aspect of health, including physical constitution, mental functionality and emotional wellness. This definition obviously makes holistic care far different than “all-natural care” or any treatment that is specifically directed at acting on the intervertebral herniation, in particular.
The problem with holistic care provided for a back or neck pain syndrome that is actually caused by a structural disc problem is that the symptoms will probably never respond favorably, as long as the disc pathology remains. In these cases, patients who desire relief will need to find some other avenue to explore towards herniated disc treatment and save the holistic care to better their overall health and wellness.
The following are all excellent examples of holistic care for disc pain problems:
Coaching is truly a holistic practice, since it can include cognitive, emotional and physical interventions. However, coaching will do nothing to resolve a truly symptomatic herniation. Coaching is best utilized in patients with back or neck pain that has been mistakenly attributed to an innocent disc abnormality or those who simply want to better learn to cope with their pain.
Chiropractic is definitely close to a holistic method of care, although the emphasis of many practices is on the physical, often neglecting the mental and psychological aspects of health. Chiropractic might actually provide the few lasting cures for structural disc problems, especially when it employs modern spinal decompression techniques.
Acupuncture and acupressure also focus on the physical, but many practitioners do take notice of the mind and body equally and certainly partially address the less anatomical aspects of health. Neither of these methods will do anything to cure a herniated disc, although they can provide marked pain relief in some patients.
Physical therapy might make some effort towards providing some emotional and cognitive reinforcement about the positive benefits of exercise therapy, but generally concentrates almost exclusively on the body. Additionally, physical therapy will never cure a structural disc problem.
Massage is very close to a truly holistic practice, although it neglects the mental aspects of health. Massage will definitely never help to cure a disc pathology.
Knowledge therapy is great for providing mental and psychological assistance for back and neck pain, but does nothing to address actual physical concerns, so is completely ineffective for structural disc issues. However, since most disc conditions are misdiagnosed, knowledge therapy is a great alternative to other treatments, since when the cause of pain is not structural, it tends to work unbelievably well.
As mentioned throughout the essay, for actual anatomical disc problems that are verifiably causing symptoms, no purely holistic method of care will ever be effective. In order to address these types of structural and mechanical pain syndromes, the best approaches to treatment include spinal decompression and herniated disc surgery and neither of these therapies qualify to be called holistic.
When back or neck pain exists incidentally to the presence of a herniated disc, such as in the overwhelming number of diagnosed cases, holistic care may help to provide pain management or even a true cure, depending on the effectiveness of care and the actual nature of the true causative condition.
We have detailed holistic back and neck pain practices in several articles across the various sites of The Cure Back Pain Network. To learn more, please enjoy using the search function at the top of our extra content column.