Social Security Coverage for Spinal Stenosis

Social Security Covers Spinal Stenosis?

If you experience spinal stenosis and are unable to work, you may be eligible for Social Security disability benefits. The Social Security Administration (SSA) offers monthly disability benefits for people who are no longer able to work due to a serious illness. The good news for you is spinal disorders are some of the most commonly approved conditions. Continue reading “Social Security Coverage for Spinal Stenosis” »

How Sleep Deprivation Impacts Back Pain

Even though the average adult needs seven to eight hours of sleep, many people struggle to get that many hours in because of pain. Rest can become even more difficult because a lack of sleep influences both pain levels and the effectiveness of pain medications.

While pain perception varies from person to person, it can also change based on sleep quality and quantity. Researchers have tested the theory that sleep loss affects pain perception in a number of different studies, including one that compared pain sensitivity between a group of people that got nine hours of sleep and another got seven. Technically, both groups got an adequate amount of sleep, yet the group that increased their sleep time showed a 25 percent higher pain tolerance. Other studies have compared pain sensitivity between groups that got half the recommended amount of sleep or got no sleep at all. Every study showed that, in general, as the amount of sleep goes down the body’s sensitivity to pain goes up.

Pain tolerance isn’t the only way that sleep deprivation affects back pain. It also influences the body’s response to pain medication.

A study published in Experimental and Clinical Psychopharmacology explored the impact of sleep on the effectiveness of codeine. All participants took codeine but only half got a full night’s rest. Those who didn’t get enough sleep did not tolerate pain as well as those who did. Because lack of sleep increases pain and reduces the effectiveness of pain medications, sleep becomes more than a luxury and enters the realm of being a partner in pain management.

Everything from daytime habits and behaviors to bedroom conditions can influence sleep and, therefore, back pain. To provide the best chance at getting a good night’s rest, the right products and equipment need to be in the bedroom. For example, a mattress that supports your back and preferred sleep style can reduce wakefulness. A dark, quiet bedroom can help keep outside noises and distractions from interfering with sleep.

Behaviors and habits that support good sleep can also become part of reducing back pain. For many people, getting better sleep means developing a consistent sleep schedule. Going to bed at the same time every night and waking up at the same time each morning helps the body correctly time the release of hormones. For those who find it difficult to fall asleep, a bedtime routine can make a big difference. It gives both mind and body a chance to relieve stress while triggering the release of sleep hormones.

Diet can also influence the sleep-wake cycle. High-fat, heavy foods eaten close to bedtime can disrupt digestion and be uncomfortable. Caffeine and other stimulants eaten within four hours of bedtime can block sleep hormones. However, there are foods that promote the production of sleep hormones like dairy products, almonds, and bananas that make good late-night snacks.

Exercise can also affect how well you sleep. Regular activity wears the body out so it’s more tired at night. It also helps with weight management, muscle strength, flexibility, and endurance, all of which can help reduce back pain. Those who suffer from back pain should consult a physician to find appropriate exercises for their age, weight, and pain issues.

A focus on high-quality sleep may not eliminate back or neck pain, but it can certainly help bring it to manageable levels and allow pain medications to take full effect.


The best tips for managing chronic back pain

gut health back pain probiotics for ankylosing spondylitis and rheumatoid arthritis

Photo via Pixabay by Whitesession For the millions of Americans who are living with chronic pain every day, it can be difficult to find the right coping methods for sustainable living. Link to this post!

5 Tips for Exercising with Scoliosis

If you are living with scoliosis, exercise is a fantastic way to strengthen your muscles and ease the pain that comes with a curved spine. Not every exercise is great for your scoliosis, and you must be careful about the kind of workout you do. These five tips will help you keep a fit, healthy body and live life to the fullest. Continue reading “5 Tips for Exercising with Scoliosis” »


Back Pain – Is it a Tumor?

spinal cancer back pain symptomsSpinal cancer is not the typical diagnosis when back pain strikes, but there are some symptoms that are red flags for a tumor or tumors in the spine. Spotting cancer early gives you the best chance of success, but due to the varying symptoms of cancer in the spine, and the relatively frequent occurrence of uncomplicated back pain, many people are not diagnosed until a tumor has already become quite large or metastasised.

If back pain persists, worsens, and is unresponsive to rest and conservative treatment, and is accompanied by the following symptoms, it is definitely time to talk to your physician about tests for cancer. Continue reading “Back Pain – Is it a Tumor?” »

Pain Management Options for Spinal Stenosis

Spinal stenosis is a very common ailment for people the world over and the pain can range from uncomfortable to intolerable. No matter what level of pain you experience with spinal stenosis, you will undoubtedly be in search of a way to treat it. Naturally, as it is such a common occurrence, there are a number of different treatment methods that you can try out yourself ranging from medication to more holistic approaches. Continue reading “Pain Management Options for Spinal Stenosis” »

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Nerve Pain and Quantum Theory – How a New Pain Management Protocol Could Revolutionise Peripheral Neuropathy Treatment

peripheral neuropathy and quantum theory for pain reliefWhat could quantum theory have to do with nerve pain? Well, according to a presentation given at the American Academy of Pain Management (AAPM) 25th Annual Clinical Meeting, quite a lot, actually. Whether this new direction for pain management will end up benefiting those with pain resulting from spinal stenosis remains to be seen, but it sure looks promising as a way of kicking the painkillers. Continue reading “Nerve Pain and Quantum Theory – How a New Pain Management Protocol Could Revolutionise Peripheral Neuropathy Treatment” »

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Do You Need a Lower Epidural Steroid Dose if You Have Diabetes?

epidural steroids and diabetes in spinal stenosisEpidural steroid injections for back pain have long been a popular way of treating spinal stenosis related to inflammation in the lumbar spine. The safety of these injections has, especially in the past couple of years, been called into question numerous times, and one such concern is the documented effect on blood glucose that occurs after epidural steroid injections. Continue reading “Do You Need a Lower Epidural Steroid Dose if You Have Diabetes?” »

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Antidepressants May Increase Your Risk of Spinal Fracture

ssris falls and fracture risk in spinal stenosis elderlyAccording to a new study, hypnotic sleep medications and SSRIs may increase the risk of osteoporotic and hip fractures in older adults. Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) are a popular type of antidepressant and, as back pain is often associated with depression, those with spinal stenosis may be particularly at risk of this complication. Continue reading “Antidepressants May Increase Your Risk of Spinal Fracture” »


Predicting Addiction – How Brain Scans Could Predict Risk of Opioid Addiction for Chronic Lower Back Pain Patients

fMRI brain in pain In the near future, doctors may be better able to decide which chronic lower back pain patients can safely be prescribed opiates for pain relief. Opioid related overdoses, and problems of opioid addiction are on the rise in the US, but as chronic back pain is also increasingly common this leaves physicians in something of a quandary over appropriate treatment. Finding a way to predict who is likely to respond well to opioids, or respond well to interventions for opioid addiction, could change the way chronic back pain is treated. Continue reading “Predicting Addiction – How Brain Scans Could Predict Risk of Opioid Addiction for Chronic Lower Back Pain Patients” »