Health blog

How long is the recovery time for a herniated disc?

March 4th, 2021
Herniated Disc Recovery Time

In most cases, time is an effective healing component for a herniated disc. However, how much recovery time your herniated disc may need can vary. 

On average, herniated discs tend to heal in between four and six weeks, but many of the people who develop a herniated disc may be looking for treatment that can reduce their recovery time. One way you can meet this goal is by working with a licensed physical therapist. These specialists can help you find effective treatment for the pain caused by herniated discs as well. 

How can physical therapy help reduce your herniated disc recovery time?

Spinal discs are part of the human musculoskeletal system. This body system is the exact one that physical therapists are trained to treat. As a result, your therapist can take many steps to help your herniated disc and to help decrease your recovery time. Some of the steps your therapist can take include: 

  1. Decompressing your spine — Over time, gravity can squeeze spinal discs and make them more likely to herniate. A physical therapist can use a manual therapy technique called spinal manipulation to help. This technique can help decompress the spine, which can reduce pressure on healing spinal discs. A study reports that it helped patients with lumbar herniated discs reduce their back pain by more than 14 points on the numeric rating scale (NRS) after five sessions. 
  1. Strengthening spine-supporting muscles — Weakness in muscles like the erector spinae can also increase pressure on a healing herniated disc. In turn, this pressure can lead to longer healing times. A physical therapist can show you how to do many therapeutic exercises that can increase spinal muscle strength. 
  1. Improving posture — Having poor posture can also affect how long a herniated disc takes to heal. It could even be the reason you developed this issue in the first place. Common types of poor posture that can affect herniated disc healing are: 
  • Forward head posture
  • Rounded shoulders
  • Swayback
  • Flat back

Your physical therapist can take steps to help you address these types of posture problems. Some of these steps can include postural training and ergonomic workspace suggestions. 

Find help reducing your herniated disc’s recovery time at Rehab Access

Are you looking for ways to reduce your herniated disc’s recovery time? Our Rehab Access Physical Therapy team is here to help you meet this goal. We offer free screenings where our physical therapists can confirm you have a herniated disc. Our specialists can also create a unique therapy plan for you that’s designed to offer all the benefits mentioned above. You can even sign up for virtual therapy sessions with our team that allow you to get help from home. 

Contact our team today for more information about how we can help treat a herniated disc or to schedule an initial appointment.