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    Osteoarthritis of the spine....
    darlyn05 posted:
    How many members/posters have spine osteoarthritis or know someone who does?
    georgia888 responded:
    Hello darlyn05,
    I have OA of the spine. It's worst in the Lumbar region. Why do you ask? I'm always interested in learning of how others deal with this, so if you'd like to start a thread on that subject, I'll be watching & responding accordingly.

    darlyn05 replied to georgia888's response:
    Hey georgia888! Yes I do. That is what they have sumized it to be, with central canal and neuraformina stenosis, end plate edema, and radiculpathy. Mine is in the lumbar region as you mentioned.

    I, like you, was wondering what others may do to help with this. And I was curious to see how wide spread this condition is.

    I am on a low dose of Lyrica, Hydrocodone as needed, Ibuprophen/NSAID as needed, and Diazepham as needed. Also, because heat makes the pain worse I've found Ben Gay Ice(kept in the freezer kind) to be off great help.

    I have good days, bad days, then there are worse days. lol As of right now I find walking to be the most beneficial, it will not let me swim so I also try walking in the water for some resistance. I tried to use a stationary bike, that was unsuccessful due to hunching over for the handlebars, or perhaps it was the higher lifting of the legs for the pedals(I'm certain it was the hunching over part b/c I can't hunch over the sink for much of like anything).

    What have you found that works for you?
    georgia888 replied to darlyn05's response:
    Hi Darlyn05,
    I find warm water exercises to be beneficial by allowing me to be more flexible throughout the day. The pool at the gym where I am a member is only 4&1/2 feet at its deepest so I must limit my exercising to various aerobics & lap swimming. I I understand in deeper waters a good therapy for us back sufferers is using a noodle while positioned upright allowing the back (discs, etc.) to loosen up. Just imagining this position sounds comforting & makes me want to seek out deeper waters.

    Have you tried a recumbent stationary bike? I believe these are supposed to be easier on the back.

    Walking is one of the best things for us, so do as much as you can tolerate. Sitting is one of our worst enemies so if you must do this, try to get up frequently & walk around. A good alternative to the typical desk chair is an exercise ball. The back muscles are kept active while on the ball & once one gets used to it, it's great.

    If your not aware of the proper ways to lift, etc., get online & check this out. We truly must pamper our backs; it's a full time job but I'll do anything to remain mobile. You can find many tips on back care at the various websites. WebMD has a great community on their Back Pain Exchange Support site.

    Good luck. Please keep us informed.

    darlyn05 replied to georgia888's response:
    Hey georgia!
    I don't belong to a gym and the few gyms locally do not have a pool of any sort. And the area hotels that allow people to come in for water therapy are limited. Also not very warm and as you mentioned I think the deepest section may be 4ft. When I try to swim it must pinch the nerves more some how as when I'm done I can hardly stand or walk and end up in bed till I make myself go the next day after.

    Not sure how friendly the exercise ball would be for the nerves, it's definately a thought. Right now walking is my best friend. lol Unfortunately with the winter months that too is limited. There is no mall locally and the schools do not let walkers in(not that I blame them considering recent years).

    I have recently pulled a camping mat out to try and do a couple of floor exercises. I'll see if I can tolerate that.

    How often do you do your water therapy?
    georgia888 replied to darlyn05's response:
    Hello darlyn,
    I am at the pool every morning as it truly is my best medicine.

    We are all different & have to find what works best for each of us. Is your home/apt big enough to walk around in? My place isn't real big but I still use it as my indoor "track."

    Another important & helpful form of therapy is stretching. I found a few good ones online that have become part of my daily routine.

    Managing our conditions is a full-time job requiring much dedication & discipline. It's all well worth it as we only have this one body & one life in which to use it.

    BethanneLamb replied to georgia888's response:
    Hello, I have Degenrative bone disease in my lumbar region.

    I agree with your comment, Georgia that managing our condition is a full time job. I am just getting into the rythm of my back and realising when it needs different things. Sometimes i need to walk sometimes i need to lie down! And sometimes a stretch.

    I am about to start getting into the pool although my physio didnt give me any specific things to do in the pool. I thought id just start by walking, what could you suggest?

    Nice to meet people who can understand the situation! x
    georgia888 replied to BethanneLamb's response:
    Hello Bethanne,
    Walking is a great way to start your water aerobics. Many gyms offer classes for those who suffer from arthritis. You may want to check out reputable online websites that offer physical therapy routines in the water. Most pools provide apparatus (noodles, paddles, etc.) that can be used for various water routines.

    If your pool is deep enough, an ideal way to decompress the spine is by placing a noodle behind you while resting your upper arms on the noodle. This allows the body to hang suspended in the water & hence, the spine decompresses in the process. It's natural & much less expensive than the decompression procedure offered by chiropractors.

    Although the pool is the safest on the musculoskeletal system, it's always a good idea to be guided towards the right indidual routine as each of our bodies are different.

    There's a real bonus to the pool workouts & that is meeting many others who suffer with similar problems as ours.

    I wish you the best of luck in & out of the water, which reminds me to add that any benefits felt in the water will be carried out to land. The pool has made my body much more flexible & less stiff.

    Please let us know how you're doing.

    Good luck!
    darlyn05 replied to georgia888's response:
    Hey georgia and Bethanne!

    georgia, I must say I admire your commitment doing the water therapy every morning, and fortunate for you that your insurance helps to cover the cost, and the gym you attend has the pool there as well. If mine did(insurance coverage), I would be doing it every day as well.

    I'm waiting on a letter from my Dr that includes the use of a gym membership so I can atleast deduct it for tax purposes(as my accountant tells me) to be able to justify the cost and have access to the equipment. I'd still have to go to a different facility for the pool but I think I could manage the treadmill stuff one day, then the pool the next. And keep that cycle going throughout the week.

    After writing with you I recently managed to find a Therapy Ctr of pretty good size with all the bells and whistles, just like a gym(it's a gym but geared more for therapy purposes). I tried the recumbent bike you suggested and I think I can tolerate that. They used to have a small pool for water therapy but not enough demand for it so they trasformed it into a stretching room. To boot, the people that own it and run it are Physical Therapists and have rooms and do Physical Therapy for clients. How lucky could I get in this small destitue/remote area!?! Now, if that letter from my Dr would just get here. lol

    I do walk around the house on occassion when I can. I was with a step-son and two of his children at the pool this past week-end, got home and you know the rest of the story. I just had a hard time telling them I couldn't participate with them.

    Managing our condition is a full time job, and one of the difficulties or draw backs for me is when I'm done doing that I'm pretty much done. Although I think once I can get the membership and a daily routine concreted that things will improve and I can take care of the other responsibilities. Atleast I'm hoping for that.

    If anyone can post links for videos on the water therapy, floor exercises, stretches, and the like that pertain to these conditions or articles it would be greatly appreciated.

    georgia, other than the water therapy, what equipment or exercises do you do for this condition?
    georgia888 replied to darlyn05's response:
    Hello darlyn,
    It sounds like you are more than ready to make this same commitment in managing your health.

    In addition to the water therapy, I walk as much as I can tolerate, stretch, perform light yoga exercises & light weight training. I do this all on a daily basis.

    Off hand, I don't know the names of the websites but can tell you I find most such information by "googling" the subject, i.e. "water aerobics for arthritis," etc. Please let me know if this method of internet searching doesn't work for you because I will make note of the websites & share them with you.

    Be sure not to over-do any routine & get ample rest & sleep as well. I also suffer from fibromyalgia & the combination of that & OA can be rather brutal but I keep things in perspective by realizing that there are far worse conditions to have.

    I make it a point to not sit for extended periods as this causes great discomfort. While reading or watching tv, I get up often to move around, stretch, etc.

    Please keep us informed on your progress.

    Good luck,
    darlyn05 replied to georgia888's response:
    Hey georgia!
    I'm sorry to hear of your fibromyalgia. I have a cousin that has this and many people misunderstand her and her condition due to it's invisibility. And the fact of how long it has taken to be understood somewhat by the medical community and become publicly acknowledged.

    I finally received that letter from my Dr and have since joined the therapy center. Today will be my 1st day. They have a list of my conditions and are going to go through different exercises and equipment with me. This past week has been trying as the weather/barometric pressure has affected my back pain.

    I have yet to google any websites. I will let you know what I find.

    Knowing this is impossible, I'd still like to wish you a painfree day.
    georgia888 replied to darlyn05's response:
    Thank you, darlyn.
    Please let us know how therapy goes.
    Best of luck to you!
    Crowhawk responded:
    I have it in the lumbar section of my spine as well as hands,feet,shoulder on right side and sciatic joint of right side.
    4sandishore replied to darlyn05's response:
    Hi Darlyn,
    You sound just like me. I walked in the pull for a long time, then it got to painful so I stopped. My spine is gone from l5 down. I am unable to sit without pain, stand for more then 30min without pain. I will try the ice pack. That is good advice. I go to a pain clinic, I have for over 5 years. Well they push narcotics and I did fine with that until this Nov. when I had a seziure, and went into a coma. thay do not know what the cause was but my DH started weaning me off the drugs. 0ver 15 a day, that was just for pain. I am now narcotic free and on 5 Gabapentin,
    1 Celebrex 2 times a day. It helps some, right now sitting here, I am getting 6 and 7 scale pain. I too feel better walking but I am going in for steroid shots 2 times this month. I will report how I feel. One drug that really work IF YOU CAN TAKE IT, is Cymbalta. 0 pain with it, but my side effects were awfull, diarreha, severe nausea,and a headache from h.... The nausea I have been fight every day since Nov. illness so I did not take a second pill. I read reviews on it and many people had the same thing. Good luck and I hope this helps someone else. Susan
    4sandishore responded:
    Hi Darlyn,
    Degenerative disc disease due to osteoarthritis. I have it in my L5 down and my neck. I am 70 years old and have been in pain since an auto accident in 1969 where I was thrown 40 feet on my spine and face. I could bear the pain until 10 years ago when I started pain management at a clinic. They like to use narcotics. Thant worked well until 5 years ago when I had to have more and more to calm the pain. I too walked in water, unti the pail it hurt more. I was in a coma and had seziures in Nov. 2012. Well that scared my DH and we stared weaning off the drugs. I am now off all narcotics. I take 1800 mg of Gabapentin along with 2 Celebrex 200mg. I do have Oxycodone for break through, I am to gun shy to take any.
    I was tried on Cymbalta, took away the pain great but the side effects were unbearable. Some may be able to tolerate the med. It is really great for pain and non-narcotic. I only took 1 because you have to wean off them also. I am getting 2 stiroid shots this month. I will report the relif if any. Good luck to all.

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