Herniated discs happen when a tear in the disc's outer layer allows the interior portion of the discs in your spine to protrude. Your herniated disc exerts pressure on the spinal nerves, which can result in pain felt in the back, neck, shoulder, and up and down the arm and/or leg. This is more likely to occur because the spinal discs gradually lose fluid volume with age. This process begins around the age of 30 and progresses slowly, over time.
Degeneration, or weakening of the spinal discs, is a common cause of herniated discs. Through gravitational influence, the discs become dehydrated, and when biomechanical alteration occurs, the fibers that support the disc material begin to deform and create bulges.
Bulging discs often do not protrude far enough to impinge on a nerve, therefore they do not cause as much pain as herniated discs. However, if bulges are not taken care of, they can continue to progress into a painful herniated disc.
Herniated discs most commontly effect young to middle-aged adults ages 30-55 due to:
A significant accident (such as a fall or auto accident)
Wear and tear
Depending on the position and size of the herniated disc, the signs and symptoms may vary widely. A bulging or herniated disc may result in tingling, pain, or discomfort in other parts of the body, including fingers, feet, or legs, due to the extensive network of nerves in the spinal column. If you suffer from a herniated disc, you may experience:
Chronic back and upper extremity pain
Numbness in the neck or shoulder region
Weakness or loss or strength
Tingling in the fingers, hand, or arm
Arm or leg pain
Numbness or tingling
It is even possible for patients to experience little to no pain at all. Each case varies depending on the individual, and the vast majority of cases resolve with conservative management.
Therapies may include:
Trigger point injections
Functional rehab therapy
Neuromuscular re-education for proper biomechanics of the spine
At Palm Beach Health Center, we provide a comprehensive range of treatment options that can help you, whether you are presently experiencing pain or are concerned that your posture could cause you problems in the future.
Our expert therapists can create a strategy to address your discomfort and concerns. Schedule an appointment with Palm Beach Health Center today!
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