Disc injuries can be painful and restricting. People often hear about ‘slipped discs’. In fact, the discs of the spine are attached to the vertebra, so they don’t actually ‘slip’. A disc injury can refer to a number of disc problems.

The spine is made up of bones called vertebrae which are separated by discs that act like shock absorbers. Discs are made of very tough cartilage, with a soft, jelly-like fluid inside. The discs between your vertebrae allow the flexibility of motion in the spine. The discs also allow an exit and entry point for spinal nerves that carry messages to the brain and body.

Disc Bulge:
A bulging disc injury is a common spine injury sustained to your spine's intervertebral disc. It can occur in your lumbar spine (lower back), thoracic spine (upper and mid-back) or your cervical spine (neck). This occurs when the soft material of the disc pushes either forward or backward out of position. This results in swelling and painful pressure to the area.

Disc Tear:
A torn disc generally refers to a tear in the annular tissue (the outer layer of the spinal disc). A disc tear is typically caused by a combination of disc degeneration and trauma. When this combination occurs, the central disc material (nucleus) often moves into the torn area of the outer layer of the disc, forming an interpositional disc herniation. A torn disc can also escalate in severity when a portion of this nucleus seeps through the tear leading to a herniated disc. 

Disc Herniation:
A herniation refers to the fluid within the centre of the disc rupturing through the outer fibres, stretching the disc beyond its normal limits.

he most common location for a herniated disc to occur is in the disc at the level between the fourth and fifth lumber vertebrae in the low back. This area is constantly absorbing the impact of bearing the weight of the upper body. This is especially important when we are standing or sitting. The lower back is also critically involved in our body's movements throughout the day, as we twist the torso in rotating side to side and as we hinge the back in flexion and extension while bending or lifting.

Disc prolapse:

A condition in which part of the disc tears away and becomes a free-floating fragment.

Disc Desiccation:

Your spine is made up of a stack of bones called vertebrae. In between each vertebra, you have a tough, spongy disc that acts as a shock absorber. Over time, these discs wear down as part of a process called degenerative disc disease. Disc desiccation is one of the most common features of degenerative disc disease. It refers to the dehydration of your discs. Your vertebral discs are full of fluid, which keeps them both flexible and sturdy. As you age, the discs begin to dehydrate or slowly lose their fluid. The disc’s fluid is replaced by fibrocartilage, the tough, fibrous tissue that makes up the outer portion of the disc. These episodes can place pressure on the disc that builds up until a small movement, such as standing or bending, sets off painful symptoms.

All of these disc injuries can vary in the type and severity of symptoms.

How can Chiropractic Care help Disc injuries?
A chiropractor can help address back pain and other herniated disc symptoms. At your initial appointment, your chiropractor will go through your medical history, do a physical exam, and perform orthopaedic and neurological tests.

At Proactive we will look for several things;

  • Are the reflexes intact?  That is:  are your nerves sending messages correctly?  (The classic reflex test is when the doctor taps your knee with a small hammer and your leg kicks up.)

  • Is there loss of muscle strength or signs of muscle wasting?

  • Is there loss of sensation along the path of a nerve?

We also look at your posture, and may order an X-ray or MRI, if necessary, to help with the diagnostic process. Even if you only have lower back pain, your chiropractor will examine your neck, too. Chiropractors evaluate the entire spine.

Treatment Techniques Include;

  • Muscle release

  • Spinal adjustments and traction

  • Rehabilitation exercises 

If you have a Disc injury, call the clinic and make an appointment with one of our chiropractors.

(All of our chiropractors are experienced in treating Disc Injuries) 

(02) 4648 0022 or book online. 

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