How Do I Know If I Have a Slipped Disc?

How Do I Know If I Have a Slipped Disc?

Welcome to Partners in Health & Wellness How Do I Know If I Have a Slipped Disc? Page. We trust that you will find our How Do I Know If I Have a Slipped Disc? Page useful in making your decision for Chiropractors in Chapel Hill, NC.

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First, it should be noted that a disc doesn’t “slip.” Discs can herniate or partially herniate but they do not “slip in and out.” A partial herniation is the most common and in many cases does not cause the patient pain. Many studies have shown that more than 50% of people walk around daily with a partial herniation, sometimes called a disc buldge, and have no symptoms. However, once a person has a full buldge or herniation, they will often experience severe back pain and leg pain. In severe cases, they may even have full sensation loss or loss of bowel and bladder function. The last type of case is a sequestration which is not a chiropractic case. If you happen to have a sequestered disc fragment, surgery is the most common option. To review, because of the way each disc is attached to the vertebra above and below it, a disc cannot “slip” as once commonly thought. However, trauma or injury to the spine can cause discs to bulge, herniate, or become sequestered (break away from the disc). This can be quite painful, putting pressure on the spinal cord and nerve roots, often interfering with your daily life.

You should also understand that spinal discs have a poor blood supply. They depend upon the circulation of joint fluid to bring in nutrients and expel waste. This joint fluid is brought in when a spinal joint moves naturally. If a spinal joint loses its normal motion and this pumping action is impaired, the health of the disc will deteriorate. Much like a sponge, a healthy disc is flexible and absorbs moisture. However, when sponge dries out it becomes hard and stiff. Therefore, dysfunctional or non-functional joints provide great peril for disc health the longer they do not move properly.

The chiropractic approach to disc problems is to help restore proper motion and position to the spinal joints. Besides reducing disc bulging, better spinal function helps decrease inflammation so the slow process of healing the surrounding soft tissues can begin. Further, it will help reduce the disc pressure around the nerve allowing you to have less pain and more movement.

While results cannot be guaranteed, many patients have avoided needless surgery or a dependency on pain pills by choosing conservative chiropractic care. Even if you have tried chiropractic in the past, we encourage you to try a short series of treatments to help restore normal function, reduce back pain, and reduce the risk of further disc and joint degeneration. If no progress is made within the first series of treatments, you will be referred to an orthopedic surgeon for evaluation and care.

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