Are you suffering from a herniated disc? Are you an enthusiast who wants to learn about neuro-skeletal disorders? If the answer is yes, this is the perfect place for you.
Chiropractor care has been around to treat spinal diseases like herniated discs for a long time now. There are many debates regarding the subject. Word of mouth says it’s effective, but science disregards the results. So, what is the truth?
Read this article to find out. You will discover all you need to know about herniated discs, its causes and treatments, chirotherapy, and what can a chiropractor do for a herniated disc?
What Is a Herniated Disc?
The human body consists of rubberlike disks or pads between the vertebrae. Each of these disks consist of a hard exterior and a soft interior part. The firm exterior is called ‘annulus’ and the soft interior is called ‘nucleus’.
A herniated disc is a medical condition in which the protective exterior (annulus) of the rubberlike disk becomes so weak that it causes the interior portion (nucleus) to expose itself. Don’t confuse herniated disc with a bulging disc.
Herniated disc is also known as slipped, cracked or ruptured disc. The rift created between the vertebrae due to abnormal nucleus projection is the reason behind such naming.
What Causes a Herniated Disc?
A herniated disc is an uncontrolled phenomenon. Medical conditions like this are often abnormal and it is difficult to detect the causes behind them. Having said that, there are still different factors at play here.
Aging is the most common reason behind the rupture of a spinal disc.
As your body grows, the components of the disc naturally begin to deteriorate. At that stage, any strain or bending movement can trigger the rupture of a disc.
See also: Exercises for Arthritis in Lower Back
Excessive strain on the back muscles and certain areas of the body can cause disposition of spinal discs. This can usually happen if you are overweight or carrying something heavy.
Another common cause of herniated discs is injury. The condition is all about straining and twisting, and a fall or stroke on the back can cause just that.
This is a rare occurrence. Predisposition of spinal discs may exist within family members of different generations.
Other than these common reasons, harmful habits like smoking and drinking are also attributed to cause this condition.
There are a couple of ways to alleviate herniated discs. Although the methods of treatment may be different, it is important to seek professional help for each. Some of the common treatment measures are mentioned below.
Physical therapy is the most straightforward method of treating a herniated disc.
This method consists of different physical exercises, stretching, and experimental methods such as Chiropractic Adjustments, Temperature Therapy etc.
Non-surgical Medical Measures
Medical measures can be of two types, surgical and non-surgical. The non-surgical measures for herniated discs consist of drugs that are anti-inflammatory and nonsteroidal in nature.
Besides, use of injections and ultrasonography is also common.
These are usually the last resort for patients. And it is also uncommon since most herniated disc cases don’t reach the surgery level severity.
But, if surgery occurs, mostly a spinal one is done.
Chiropractic Treatment for Herniated Disc
Let’s get to know about the chiropractic treatment for herniated disc.
What Is Chiropractic?
Chiropractic is a form of experimental or alternative treatment that follows principles complementary to the modern scientific treatment methods.
It is often known as a quasi-scientific method of treatment and is labelled along with other such methods like Homeopathy, Ayurveda etc.
Generally, in chiropractic adjustment, the muscular part of the skeletal system is examined and treated.
The treatment process in this method is manual manipulation.
Who Are Chiropractors?
You guessed it right. The healthcare professionals who are certified to perform chiropractic treatments are known as chiropractors.
It is to be considered here that chiropractors are not doctors, as they do not have a medical license or degree. They are professionals too, but their authorization is different than that of the conventional doctors.
What Can a Chiropractor Do for a Herniated Disc?
One of the main arenas of chiropractic treatments is the case of herniated or ruptured spinal disks. The reason why many patients opt for this treatment is because it is not invasive and the there are no medicinal side effects.
Moving on to the actual treatment method, your chiropractor will take different approaches to diagnose and treat the problem. First of all, your chiropractor will verify your condition by ordering MRI, X-ray or other diagnostic reports.
Then, after the verification and diagnosis, your chiropractor will focus on his/her approach to the treatment. Your entire spinal cord will be examined, just to evaluate how well it is coordinating with the body.
As an integral part of your treatment, your chiropractor will then focus on to the application of manual therapy, also known as spinal manipulation. This is basically the combination of a series of exercises and therapeutic measures that alleviate your pain.
In addition to that, the preliminary steps will also consist of nutritional diet, relaxation therapies, complete bed rest etc.
For more advanced steps, the chiropractor will use different detection devices such as the lumbar traction machine to release pressure off your disk and allow it to go back to its place.
Chirotherapy can be useful on several levels. Some of the benefits are listed here.
- Safety: Chiropractic is a comparatively safe treatment. It involves no major distortion of the body parts.
- Inexpensive: If you compare the costs of chiropractic with other conventional treatments of herniated disc, you will observe that it is much more inexpensive.
- Vitality: Since this type of treatment also offers care for your neck muscles and headaches, it increases vitality by relieving stress and anxiety.
Chiropractic care has several risk factors associated with it too. Here are some of the downsides of different ranges.
- Insufficient Scientific Evidence: Since this therapy is pseudo-scientific in nature, there is no logical guarantee that it will bear results.
- Lengthy Process: This is a lengthy process that requires many visits with your professional.
Other than these, there are also some health risks like strokes, stiffening of the neck etc. However, these occurrences are rare.
If you are someone with a herniated disc, there are several things you might want to take care of. You must not lift heavy weights or play any sport that might strain your spine even more.
Another thing to consider if you are a herniated disc patient is your mattress. While this can’t cure your problem, it can definitely ease the pain. The best mattress for herniated disc is one that is firm, supportive, and flexible. Some of the high rated ones are Memory Foam, Latex Mattress, Perfect Cloud Atlas, etc.
Now that you have gathered all the basic information about herniated discs and what a chiropractor can do for a herniated disc, it’s time for you to do your own research.
Since this is a sensitive topic, we suggest you to thoroughly analyse before considering anything. You know what a chiropractor can do for a herniated disc, but do you know whether it is suitable for you or not?
So, find out your own options, and stay healthy!
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