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What is a Slipped Disc?

A slipped disc is synonymous with a herniated, buldging, or prolapsed disc. It is more of a laymans term used to describe the often very painful symptoms that can accompany the condition. This situation is when the jelly type substance of the spinal disc begins to push through the outer cartilagenous part of the disc often creating pressure on the surrounding nerve root. The disc is used to create cushion and space between each of your spinal vertebrae to ensure proper spinal health and movement. If the disc has lost its integrity, a slipped disc can have adverse health consequences.

How Does Someone Get a Slipped Disc?

One can get a slipped disc by lifting heavy object, twisting wrong, or as simple as turning toward the back seat of your car.  Overweight or elderly people are more likely to have a slipped disc due to the natural deterioration of the spine in these particular people. The most common cause, however is the deterioration of spinal integrity over time caused by a vertebral subluxation. This condition occurs where normal vertebral movement is lost due to the fixation of one or more spinal vertebrae. Subluxations can cause a disc to degenerate over time without a person knowing it very similar to a cavity being in one’s mouth for years without them knowing. This slow degeneration can lead to weakening of the disc space and ultimately a slipped disc.

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What Are the Symptoms of a Slipped Disc?

Symptoms can vary from no pain to severe pain. Almost 90% of spinal nerves have nothing to do with transmitting pain so many people can have a buldge, slipped, or even herniated disc and not know it. While this can occur, often times pain is associated such as weakness in muscles, sciatica, lower or lumbar back pain, tingling, numbness, cervical, thoracic, or lumbar radiculopathy or radiation into the extremties. A person with a slipped disc will also have difficulty sitting or standing in one place for a long time, or even taking short walks.  It is imperative to have proper spinal health throughout your life to maintain integrity of the spinal structures.

What Do I Do About my Slipped Disc?

The most safe and effective way to address your condition is to visit a well trained and experienced Doctor of Chiropractic.  There are many options to address this condition including often painful invasive procedures such as cortisone shots and at worse case surgery both of which can have adverse side effects.  Yoga, exercise, therapies, and spinal strengthening are also important.  Chiropractic care, however, seems to be the most safe and effective way to address this condition with minimal or no side effects. (1)

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