Over-the-counter medication used to provide spinal arthritis pain relief includes acetaminophen, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs such as aspirin and topical ointments, according to WebMD. Prescription drugs used to treat spinal arthritis pain include painkillers, mild narcotics, oral steroids and epidural steroids, which are injected around the spinal column.
Nondrug treatments include walking, swimming and water aerobics. In addition to exercise, patients are often initially advised to lose weight, then maintain the healthy weight. Massage, acupuncture, compresses and nutritional supplements are also used to treat spinal arthritis. Surgery is often recommended when bladder functions and the nervous system are impaired, according to WebMD.