Chiropractic Care and Your Herniated Disc Pain
May 21, 2020
Herniated disc. Slipped disc. Bulging disk. Pinched nerve.
You may have heard all these terms to describe severe pain felt in the back. The fact is: the worst of the bunch is the herniated disc.
Discs are structures that rest comfortably between your vertebrae, like gel-filled cushions or shock absorbers. A disc can herniate through a tear in the supportive ligaments surrounding one of discs. This can be caused by:
- Sudden injury
- Constant stress
- Improper lifting or twisting of the spinal column
Once the disc ruptures (or herniates), the disc material (somewhat like a jelly) inflames and exerts pressure on the spinal nerves resulting in pain. In the worst-case scenario, the material can push all the way out from between your vertebrae and press on the nerves that branch off the spinal cord.
Will Chiropractic Help Your Herniated Disc?
Chiropractors do not pop a disc back in place using force, nor can a few quick treatments “fix” your herniated disc. With gentle and usually painless adjustment techniques, over time, a disc can be repaired.
In 2006 study published in the prestigious scientific journal “Spine,” showed excellent results for chiropractic manipulation in the treatment of disc injuries and sciatica.
What to Expect from Care
To help relieve symptoms of disc pain, your chiropractor will first assess your pain to determine your course of treatment. First, it is important to determine if your reflexes are intact and communicating.
Second, your chiropractor will see if there is any loss of muscle strength and check if you have full sensory communication along numerous paths of nerves.
These important orthopedic and neurological exams can help your chiropractor determine which course of action to take next.
A herniated disc is a serious injury. If at any time your chiropractor feels that a spinal surgeon is needed you will be referred. Your chiropractor will check your posture and may order an x-ray or MRI (if necessary) to help with the diagnostic process.