Treatment of Cervical Disc Degeneration
The spinal column is comprised of bones called vertebrae which keep us standing upright. The vertebrae protect the spinal cord, which stretches from the brain to the base of the spine. Located in between the vertebrae are spongy cushions known as cervical disks. Cervical disks stabilize the neck and facilitate smooth side-to-side or forward-to-back movements. Disks are similar to shock absorbers, protecting the neck during a person’s everyday actions – as well as during more strenuous activities that produce wear and tear on the body.
The top seven spinal vertebrae are identified as cervical vertebrae, containing nerves that connect to the extremities and upper body. As we grow older, the cervical disks begin to wear out and can start to degenerate. When this happens, the space between the vertebrae grows more narrow, and the nerves become pinched, resulting in cervical degenerative disk disease.
As the condition worsens, the neck loses flexibility. Symptoms include pain and stiffness in the neck, as well as weakness, pain, or numbness along the shoulder, arm, and hand.
If you begin to experience neck or upper back pain, a herniated cervical disk may be to blame.
What is a Herniated Cervical Disc?
When the soft inner material protrudes through a weak section of the disc’s outer layer, the result is a herniated cervical disc, also known as a slipped or ruptured disc.
A herniated cervical disc can occur from years of wear and tear – or may be the result of sudden trauma such as a car accident. Sometimes, the issue is caused by a bone spur that is compressing the disc.
Most individuals living with a herniated cervical disc feel mild to moderate neck pain, and the pain may radiate into the arms or shoulders. Other common symptoms include numbness, tingling, or muscle weakness.
Can Chiropractic Care Help with an Injured Cervical Disc?
Those suffering from a herniated disc in their neck often ease the pain and numbness by visiting a chiropractor. Chiropractic medicine targets holistic, natural healing and treats medical issues traditionally addressed with drugs or surgery. Chiropractic care works to restore correct spinal movement and alignment, relieving pressure on the nerves that could be causing pain and discomfort. These treatments also reduce inflammation, improve nerve function, and promote healing.
When the spine’s discs are not functioning correctly and start to herniate or bulge, pain is inevitable. A chiropractor looks at the alignment of the spinal column to discover where the issue originates. If a misalignment or blockage is determined, your chiropractor may utilize adjustments, massages, and other techniques to alleviate pressure on the discs.
What is Cervical Decompression?
At Integrated Chiropractic, Dr. Ryan Johnson utilizes cervical decompression techniques to treat neck pain from cervical herniations and bulges, as well as migraines, headaches, and whiplash injuries from car accidents. Cervical decompression targets the specific injured disc by adjusting the angle of a specialized table.
This gentle treatment takes less than 30 minutes and includes appropriate time for warm-up, treatment, and a cool down. Decompression can be applied alongside other chiropractic therapies. Although relief is often experienced in just a few treatments, a more extended treatment plan should be developed with the chiropractor in order to completely correct and heal the root issues of the pain.
Integrated Chiropractic cares for Sarasota residents as well as those visiting our area. If you are experiencing neck and back pain and need relief, call today for your initial appointment.