A herniated disc causes lower back and neck pain, tingling in the arms and legs, and limb weakness. In severe cases, these symptoms make it tough to lift or hold objects – or even make walking without stumbling a challenge.
Herniated discs usually resolve within four to six weeks. But nobody wants to put up with such painful and debilitating symptoms for that long. Luckily, a North Atlanta chiropractor can help you get back on your feet fast. Find out more below.
What is a Herniated Disc?
Your spine is made up of vertebrae stacked on top of one another. In between each bony vertebrae is a gel-like disc, made up of a jelly-like center (nucleus pulposus) and a tough outer layer (annulus fibrosus). Discs cushion vertebrae and absorb shock from the impact of walking, jumping, and running.
A herniated disc – also called a protrusion, or ruptured disc – occurs when the annulus cracks, allowing the jelly-like nucleus to push out. Some people don’t notice when this occurs. If the herniated disc irritates a nearby nerve, however, symptoms like those described above appear.
This condition can occur for many reasons. Discs become more brittle with age, making the annulus more likely to crack. Certain risk factors also increase the odds of herniated disc, including obesity, genetics, smoking, and physically demanding jobs that require pushing, pulling, and lifting.
How Can a North Atlanta Chiropractor Help?
Chiropractic care is a proven means of treating a herniated disc. One study showed 90.5% of patients reported improvement in their symptoms after regularly seeing a chiropractor.
A North Atlanta chiropractor can take various steps to address your herniated disc. They will first evaluate the severity of your symptoms, checking muscle strength, and motor coordination.
Depending on the location of the herniated disc, the symptoms, and your personal patient profile, a chiropractic care plan may include:
- Spinal decompression: Also called Intervertebral Differential Dynamics Therapy, or IDD Therapy®, the chiropractor uses a special machine that gently “stretches” the spine. As the vertebrae are pulled apart, pressure on the disc is alleviated, allowing it to shift away from the affected nerve.
- Chiropractic Adjustment: This can be used to stimulate the muscles surrounding the herniated disc. It relieves tension, decreasing pressure on the nerve root and reducing inflammation. Blood flow to the area can then increase, speeding healing.
- Physiotherapy: The chiropractor may recommend preventative exercises and stretches to continue at home, between chiropractic sessions, to mitigate pressure, tension, and inflammation. For example, if bad posture has exacerbated your herniated disc, corrective exercises will help.
These are just some possible treatment options. A chiropractor will determine the best treatment for you based on your unique patient profile.
Contact a Duluth Chiropractor for Herniated Disc Help
North Atlanta Chiropractic Center provides high-quality, comprehensive chiropractic services. Dr. Angela Amaral has been serving patients as a chiropractor in Duluth for over 20 years. She is a board-certified Doctor of Chiropractic and is additionally certified in physiological therapeutics.