Physical therapy is used to relieve pain and restore movement and flexibility. In the past, patients with disc problems were advised to rest and avoid activity. Today, a program of physical therapy that includes both passive and active treatments is an effective way to treat the pain related to disc problems and help prevent future injury.
Passive physical therapy for disc problems might include ice and heat therapy, ultrasound, electrotherapy, and/or low level laser therapy. Active therapy might include exercise programs designed specifically to minimize the pain of bulged or herniated discs. As pain dissipates, exercises to build core strength and stability may be used to improve the overall health of the spine and to avoid further injury.