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Herniated Disc Treatment in Jacksonville, FL

Back pain continues to be a significant health problem in this country. While 80 percent of the population suffer from periodic, back pain, close to 20 percent of people today suffer from back pain that is linked to spinal disc conditions. To decide whether or not to seek care for a condition linked to a spinal disc problem Jacksonville Florida residents and other sufferers throughout the country may benefit by learning more about this unique yet painful health condition. They can understand how injuries like a Bulging disc occurs and why Herniated disc treatment can take on numerous different forms.

Understanding Spinal Discs

Spinal discs, and their scientifically known ligamentous structure the annuli fibrosis, are gel and water-filled rings that sit in between the bones of the spinal column. The innermost area of each disc is called the nucleus pulposis while the spinal column bones are called vertebra. The annulus fibrosis performs important duties to ensure proper flexibility and good health. The functions of the spinal discs primarily are to:

  • Absorb shock
  • Protect the spinal cord and spinal nerves
  • Help spinal column flexibility yet limit motion
  • Perform other important functions


In the past when people suffered from back pain doctors overwhelmingly believed that these individuals suffered from a condition known as a slipped disc. However, today doctors know that these soft shock absorbing mechanisms can in fact develop more serious injuries that could result in debilitating pain and suffering. The most common of these injuries is a herniated disc. We now know that discs do not in fact slip, they can bulge, herniate, become extruded and or sequestered.

A herniated disc results when the annulus fibrosis becomes torn and the nucleus pulposis is able to leak through the tear. It is considered to be a grave and painful injury for which immediate medical treatment is warranted. If left untreated, the herniated disc could compress the nerves of the spinal column and even compress the spinal cord itself. People who suffer from this injury are often in so much pain that they cannot carry out their normal duties like care for their families or go to work. 


A bulging disc refers to a condition during which the disc literally bulges from the spinal column. This condition can be temporary, although the research is non-conclusive concerning the length of time one could suffer pain linked to a bulging disc; nonetheless, it is still painful and may warrant treatment.


Disc degeneration, which is the most common type of ailment connected to the spinal discs. This is when the discs can become dehydrated thus losing volume. As the disc becomes thinner the bones of the spinal column are allowed to become more closely approximated which can crowd and irritate the spinal nerves and the spinal cord itself. This condition is also known to weaken the discs and make them more susceptible to severe injury like a herniation

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Signs, Symptoms & Risk Factors of Spinal Disc Conditions

A number of different lifestyle and fitness factors can contribute to these conditions. For many local people who suffer from spinal disc problems Jacksonville Florida residents should see a Chiropractic physician for a thorough examination which should identify the problem and the causative factor(s). Being obese and inactive can cause the discs in a person's spine to wear out prematurely. As the person puts on weight, the discs must absorb more pressure from the vertebrae. When people exercise and stay fit, however, they are able to relieve this pressure and also increase the flexibility needed for good spinal health. Movement actually nourishes the disc and keeps them healthy. Inactivity and lack of motion can basically starve the discs of nutrients. 


Likewise, degenerative disc disease also contributes to these spinal disc problems. Degenerative disc disease can occur after an injury. Research has shown that as fast as 3 months after an injury the arthritic process can begin and disc can degenerate as a result. This condition will then be progressive in nature. However, many sufferers inherit this condition. This ailment has a tendency to run in families.

You may have good reason to suspect spinal disc problems if you experience...

  • Pain in their back and neck
  • Pain in their arms or legs
  • Stiffness in their back, leg, neck, or arm muscles
  • Tender spine or spinal column muscles

Some more serious symptoms associated with spinal disc problems include...

  • Bowel or bladder control loss
  • Loss of feeling in the groin, buttocks, arms, or legs
  • Inability to move one's arms or walk normally
  • Fever accompanied with the pain
  • Progressive muscle weakness

Treatment

If you experience any of these major symptoms, please be advised to go to the nearest emergency room or call your primary care doctor immediately. If you experience one of the lesser symptoms, you should seek help from a professional Chiropractor. The provider can conduct a thorough examination to inspect the spinal column, the spine's curvature and posture, flexibility and range of motion, neurological integrity, and also the extent of the pain. 


Depending on the exam's findings, the Chiropractor may order tests that range from simple x-rays to a more thorough MRI. These tests help the provider determine if any discs are bulging or herniated. Chiropractors typically will not recommend surgery or give medications. 


If the provider finds that a patient suffers from a more serious condition like a fractured bone or an organic disease, he or she will refer the patient to an appropriate specialist or surgeon.

Find relief through treatments like...

  • Non-surgical Spinal Decompression
  • Therapeutic Massage
  • Mobilization Techniques
  • Spinal Adjustments
  • Rehabilitation
  • Physical Therapy

If the problem is something that the chiropractor can treat, North Florida Spine and Injury Center will typically devise a plan to minimize and manage the patient's pain level. It also may be recommended that the patient try to move normally. Hesitating to move or “babying” one's back can result in the disc problem worsening and the tightness and pain lingering longer than necessary.

Avoiding Spinal Disc Problems

Avoiding spinal disc conditions can be as simple as exercising, eating right, and maintaining a healthy weight. People who are at risk of inheriting degenerative disc disease should particularly remain active and continue to exercise to hold off the disease for as long as possible. People should also avoid awkward positions while sitting or standing and lift with their legs / knees instead of their backs when doing heavy lifting.


If you are suffering with a herniated disc, bulging disc, and/or degenerated disc in Jacksonville, FL please give us a call and schedule an appointment to have your problems properly addressed and not have your symptoms temporarily covered up.

illustration of normal disc, bulging disc, and herniated disc treatment in Jacksonville FL