Slipped Disc: Frequently Asked Questions
The spinal column is made up of a series of 24 vertebrae (bones) that are stacked onto each other. The bones are separated by discs that protect them by absorbing the shocks from daily activities like lifting, twisting, and walking. Each disc is made up of two parts: a soft and gelatinous inner portion and a tough outer ring. Weakness or injury may cause the disc’s inner portion to protrude through the outer ring. When this occurs, the condition is known as herniated, prolapsed, or slipped disc. A slipped disc can cause pain and discomfort. If the slipped disc compresses one of the spinal nerves, patients may also experience pain, numbness, tingling or weakness in the arms or legs as well. In severe cases, surgery may be required to remove or repair the slipped disc. Frequently Asked Questions What are some of the common symptoms of a slipped disc? A slipped disc can occur in any part of the spine, but they are most common in the lower back and lower neck. Some of the most common symptoms of the condition include: ● ● ● ● ● ● ●
Numbness and pain (often on one side of the body) Pain that extends to the legs and arms Pain that worsens at night (or when doing certain movements) Pain that worsens after prolonged sitting or standing Unexplained muscle weakness Pain when walking short distances Aching, tingling, or burning sensation in the affected area
What causes slipped discs to occur? Slipped disc occurs when the outer ring becomes torn or weak and causes the inner portion to slip out. Disc herniation can occur when there is too much stress on the disc over time due to excess weight or poor posture. In addition, a herniated disc can also be caused by physical injury or a combination of other factors. Often, poor biomechanics of the spinal joints and surrounding tissues, which many people may be unaware of, will lead to increased wear and tear. Slipped disc can also occur as a result of weak muscles and a sedentary lifestyle. Risks of developing a slipped disc becomes higher as we age due to loss of protective disc hydration, but even young people may experience this condition as well. The condition is somewhat more common in men than in women.
How is the condition diagnosed? To diagnose the condition, the doctor will first perform a physical exam. This is done in order to determine the source of the pain and discomfort. The exam can involve checking reflexes, muscle strength, joint mobility as well as nerve function. The patientâ€™s symptoms as well as medical history will also be taken into account. Imaging tests like X-ray or MRI may also likely be needed so the doctor can evaluate the extent of the damage and rule out any conditions that may need immediate medical attention. What are the treatment options for slipped discs?
Treatment options for slipped discs can range from conservative treatment options like chiropractic and physiotherapy to injections and surgery. Chiropractors are specially trained in the spinal structures and how they can impact slipped discs. They are not only
able to identify the source and likely causes of the pain, they can also recommend the best treatment options for each individual case. Nowadays, chiropractic care has become an increasingly popular way to treat bulging or slipped discs. Along with chiropractic care, modern spinal decompression equipment helps to speed up recovery of this condition safely and effectively. Apart from taking pressure off the bulging disc so it can heal on its own, chiropractic care combined with spinal decompression can also help ensure similar injuries are prevented in the future. Some of the benefits of seeking spinal decompression and chiropractic care for bulging discs include: ● Treatment is noninvasive ● There will be no pills, injections, or other controlled substances involved ● Treatment is done by licensed professionals who are trained to alleviate symptoms and prevent future issues ● Chiropractic care is holistic so professional advice on lifestyle and nutrition may also be provided to not only relieve pain, but improve your health and wellness. While not usually recommended as a first course of action, surgery may be resorted to if the symptoms do not subside with treatment or if the condition poses a medical emergency risk. We recommend you check with a trusted chiropractic professional to see if their treatment options may be suitable for you.
Do you think you are suffering from a slipped disc?