Due to the nature of your work or an unfortunate accident, you might strain your back muscles or tendons. This leads to lower back pain that can be excruciating and make you uncomfortable. Rest is the only thing you need at times, and your body will be back to optimal functioning. However, at times, you might need more than that. Fortunately, alternative remedies alleviate the pain, such as medication and physical therapy.
In the case of physical therapy, lumbar traction has proven to be an effective method in treating lower back pain. This method uses a lumbar traction device to apply a decompressing and stretching force to the lumbar vertebrae, which relieves the pain.
Uses of a Lumbar Traction Device
Primarily, the use of a lumbar traction device is to manage lower back pain. Theoretically, through slight separation of the bones in the lower back, the bones have a ripple effect in taking the pressure of the pinched nerves, mostly the sciatic nerve, decreasing the subsequent pain and improving your mobility. The lumbar traction device moves axially, hence changing the position of the nucleus pulposus in relation to the posterior annulus fibrosus.
Resultantly, the position of the disc-nerve interface changes, thus reducing the mechanical pressure exerted on the nerve by the displaced disc. Alternatively, the lumbar traction device eases back pain by stimulating joint and disc repair or enhancing tissue degradation. However, before opting for lumbar traction, diagnostic imaging of the lower back is essential.
How to use a Lumbar Traction Device
Notably, caution needs to be taken when using the lumbar traction device since inappropriate use might lead to severe body damage. Therefore, you must consult with your health care provider to give you the appropriate recommendation for using the device, depending on the severity of your condition. Some of the areas that should be indicated include the amount of traction needed, time duration for each traction, the right position, and the weekly or daily frequency of treatment. It is recommended that for a start, you can use 200 lb of traction in10 minutes duration.
Preparation for the lumbar traction session involves the removal of clothing, belts, and other accessories around the lower back area. This makes the lower and upper harnesses in proper contact with your skin hence efficient results. The subsequent preparation procedures include:
- Placing the device on a flat rigid surface with its wheels facing up.
- Unzipping the device casing and removing the hand pump.
- Opening up the lower and upper harnesses and ensuring they are overlapping.
- Setting up your timing device.
Now, it is time to begin the treatment. You need to use the following chronological procedure to attain optimal results.
- Lie down on the device in a way that the lower harness is approximately an inch over your hips.
- Securely tighten the lower and upper harness over your skin without applying a lot of pressure.
- Apply the traction using the pump within the parameters recommended by your healthcare provider.
A lumbar traction device is a non-surgical method that aims to return the back to its optimal functionality while effectively alleviating the pain. The lumbar traction device works by creating space between the bones that make up the spine. Therefore, when correctly used as recommended by your physician, you will be back to moving and functioning normally.