Composed of tough but flexible fibrous cartilage that acts like gel-filled cushions between vertebrae, discs are essential for preventing the vertebral bone from grinding against each other. Healthy vertebral discs also allow you to bend, twist and move easily without pain or stiffness. Due to aging, disease or trauma, discs sometimes herniate, or suffer tears that cause the disc to bulge, protrude from between vertebrae and generally, become displaced from their correct positioning. Depending on the severity of disc herniation diagnosed by your Franklin TN chiropractor, pain from irritated nerves can range from mild to debilitating.
Your Brentwood Chiropractor, Premier Family Chiropractic Answers Questions about Disc Herniation
Why Does my Herniated Disc Cause Leg Pain?
Innervated by nerves spreading outward from the spinal cord, your legs may feel painful if a herniated disc irritates the sciatic nerve, a large nerve formed by a bundle of nerve roots meeting at the bottom of your spine. Since branches of the sciatic nerve extend down the back of your legs, into your ankles and feet, you can have a herniated disc and shooting pains in the legs.
Do I Need Surgery to Relieve Herniated Disc Pain?
The majority of herniated disc cases do not require surgery. In fact, with effective chiropractic treatment provided by your Brentwood chiropractor, bulging or protruding hernias may resolve naturally within one year. Adjustments, massage therapy and recommending beneficial lifestyle choices to facilitate healing of a herniated disc are just a few of the ways your chiropractor helps reduce herniated disc pain without surgery.
How Does Chiropractic Adjustments Benefit Herniated Discs?
Adjustments are necessary to restore alignment to the spine when vertebral subluxation forces one or more vertebrae out of its proper position. Subluxations can cause discs to bulge if vertebrae squeeze discs abnormally. Additionally, subluxations often result in compression and irritation of spinal nerves which increases pain and discomfort of a herniated disc. Chiropractic adjustments reestablish correct positioning of vertebrae to relieve pressure on nerves and discs.
Besides Aging and Disease, What Other Risk Factors Influence Development of Herniated Discs?
Men between 30 and 55 are more likely to suffer a herniated disc due to improperly lifting heavy items, being overweight, engaging in repetitive activities that put excessive stress on the spine, smoking and not getting enough exercise. There is some research indicating herniated discs may have a genetic component associated with congenital spinal and/or disc abnormalities.
What are Symptoms of a Herniated Disc?
When a herniated disc affects the lower back, you may feel pain radiating into your buttocks and legs, numbness and tingling in your legs and general muscle weakness. Signs of herniated discs in the neck include pain around the shoulder blades, pain extending into your arms and hands and neck muscle spasms. Mid-back herniated discs symptoms are often vague or nonexistent.
If you think you may have a herniated disc or other back problems, please call Premier Family Chiropractor today at (615) 661-4101 to schedule an appointment with a Franklin TN chiropractor.