Chiropractic Care for Disc Problems

by admin on October 9, 2014

Disc problems and back painOne common cause is disc problems, which can lead to tenderness, stiffness or pain in the back, neck, arms or legs. Chiropractic treatment can often provide pain relief.

What are discs?

Discs are flexible rings at the top and bottom of each vertebra, consisting of ligament-like material that cushion the spine and allow it to move. They act as shock absorbers, protecting the spine from impact.

Each disc is essentially a sac that contains a jelly-like substance made up mostly of water. Most disc problems involve tearing of the disc, which can cause a loss of fluid from the sac, which in turn causes pain because the spine is not adequately cushioned.

What are the different kinds of disc problems?

A “bulging disc” results from small tears in the disc that can be very painful for a short time.

A “herniated disc” involves more serious tears and leakage from the sac. It can also compress nerves. In the most serious cases, the spinal cord itself can become compressed.

The most common disc problem is called “degenerative disc disease.” In some cases it is caused by injury or trauma, in others it is an inherited condition. Degenerative disc disease causes small tears in the disc, which then loses fluid. Bone spurs, also called “osteophytes,” develop on the edges of the vertebrae. Over time, the disc space gets narrower.

How are disc problems treated?

Most disc problems can be treated non-surgically. Treatment often involves a combination of comfort measures such as heat and/or ice, an exercise regimen appropriate to the person’s level of injury and fitness, and chiropractic spinal manipulation. These measures are all designed to relieve pain and allow the disc to heal.

What are the warning signs of more serious problems?

In some cases serious problems can develop. If you experience any of the following symptoms, you should contact your doctor immediately:

– Fever that accompanies back pain

– Inability to walk or use your arms because of extreme weakness

updated 10-9-2014

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