Treatment options for arthritis in the spine include weight loss or maintenance, exercise and medications, according to WebMD. Other ways to treat arthritis in the spine include pain medications, topical treatments and surgery.
Weight loss and exercise are the primary initial treatments for spinal arthritis, reports WebMD. It is also important for patients to maintain a healthy weight following weight loss. Exercise helps increase flexibility in the spine, improve the mood, strengthen the heart and improve blood blow. Exercise also makes it easier to do everyday tasks.
Pain medications also help treat spinal arthritis, explains WebMD. Some of the most common medications for this condition include nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and acetaminophen. Most people with the condition try over-the-counter medications first, but doctors may prescribe other medications if over-the-counter drugs do not bring relief. Those with spinal arthritis can also try topical creams and gels for pain relief or steroid injections.
Most of the time, spinal osteoarthritis is treatable without surgery, but sometimes surgery is the only solution, states WebMD. Since spinal osteoarthritis is one of the causes of stenosis in the spine, it is important that treatment occurs. In some cases, the bowel and bladder functions stop and walking becomes difficult, making surgery the only option.