Interestingly, not every herniated disc causes symptoms. Some people discover they have a bulging disc or herniated disc after an x-ray for an unrelated reason.
Most of the time, the symptoms, especially the pain, prompt the patient to seek medical care. The visit with the doctor usually includes a physical exam and neurological exam . He or she will also review your medical history , and ask about what symptoms you've experienced and what treatments you've tried for pain relief.
An x-ray may be needed to rule out other causes of back pain such as osteoarthritis (spondylosis) or spondylolisthesis.
Home remedies for disc herniation can be very effective in relieving the pain. These include over-the-counter nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs ( NSAIDs ) such as ibuprofen ( Advil , Motrin ) and naproxen sodium ( Aleve ), as well as the application of heat and ice. Alternating heat and ice is very effective for pain relief for many people. Activity modification is also important, which includes avoidance of activities that aggravate pain and may worsen the nerve impingement. Bed rest and complete inactivity are unnecessary; they hinder recovery and are not advised.