The Various Ways You Can Experience Trauma to Discs in Your Back
When you think about back pain, the first type of ailment most people mention has something to do with one of your discs. The discs in your back function like shock absorbers, ensuring you have flexibility and range of motion while protecting the nerves and other critical components in your spine. But a “disc problem” can mean many different things.
A Bulging Disc
Typically considered the mildest form of disc injury, a bulging disc occurs when some of the soft, cushiony inner part of the disc expands out beyond where it is normally found. A bulging disc may stem from age-related wear and tear, heavy lifting, repetitive motion or stress or poor posture. One of the telltale symptoms—your back pain increases when you bend forward or lift something. A bulging disc is treated with anti-inflammatory medication, with spinal manipulation and with exercises to increase muscle strength.
A Herniated Disc
A herniated disc occurs when the bulge is substantial enough that the soft center part of the disc comes out of the hard, outer shell of the disc. A herniated disc typically involves pain at the location of the injured disc—herniated discs are most common in the lumbar region (the lower back). A herniated disc, if not properly treated, can impinge on the spinal cord, leading to muscle spasms and weakness, tingling and even paralysis. A herniated disc may be treated with physical therapy, injections and heat/ice, but may also require a surgical procedure.
A pinched nerve is actually the result of a herniated disc, and occurs when the bulging portion of the disc impinges on or “pinches” a nerve in the spinal cord or elsewhere. With a pinched nerve, it’s more common to feel pain “radiating” out from the source of the irritation.
Experiencing Back Pain?—Let Peralta Chiropractic Help
At Peralta Chiropractic, with offices in Dallas, we use chiropractic care and treatment to improve the health and well-being of patients across the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex, including people hurt in motor vehicle accidents. Call us at 214-942-3700 or at 817-923-1254 to set up an appointment.