Treatment for Occipital Neuralgia Condition
If you have been diagnosed with occipital neuralgia, you might find yourself wondering exactly what you should do to get this disease under control and treated so you can live a happy and healthy life. If you feel that you might have occipital neuralgia but do not know exactly what symptoms are associated with the disease, check out our article on occipital neuralgia symptoms before you move into this article.
It can be a scary thing to have a disease that seems like it will never go away. Because the symptoms of this disease are typically associated with painful chronic headaches, many people feel that they are “up the creek without a paddle” when it comes to their own treatment. However, the wonders of modern medicine have made it so that almost any disease that we have discovered can be cured or at least diminished in some way. Occipital neuralgia is no exception to this rule.
The treatment options for occipital neuralgia range from safe to somewhat risky. One of the very first ways that doctors will try to treat this disease is to go with a local nerve block. This type of treatment is designed to stop the nerve from firing, which makes your brain unable to decipher the pain signal that it is sending. It seems like a treatment that is more likely to mask the disease rather than cure it, but if there is no cure it is a good solution. Another treatment, which seems like almost the opposite approach, is to actually stimulate nerves that are around the area. The idea behind this is that it will diminish the pain by spreading it out over more nerves. This is a less common treatment.
The next batch of treatment options have to do with medications. The very first that most doctors will try is a steroid. Steroids typically do pretty well in this situation, however they do have side effects that most people do not find desirable. In that case, steroids are not a great option for long-term treatment. There are other types of injections that you can take for occipital neuralgia, but the most common secondary treatment is to go on antidepressants. While it might seem a little bit strange to go on antidepressants to treat chronic headaches, it’s actually not that surprising. Antidepressants have quite a bit of “side effects” that can actually do some good in other types of diseases. This is one of those cases.
When you get into the more serious options, you’re looking at surgical choices. You can actually have neurolysis performed or even micro decompression, but these are extremely serious options that you carry with them additional risks. They should only be performed when all of the other treatment options do not work at all. It is better to go with a safer treatment option that works only partially than to risk it and go with one of these options that could carry with them some extra risk and danger.