The arrangement of a series of bones or vertebrae in a stack forms the spinal column. Seven bones constitute the cervical spine, twelve bones in the thoracic spine, and five vertebrae in the lumbar spine, along with sacrum and coccyx lying at the base. There are discs present as cushions in between the bones to prevent grinding against each other. A herniated disk or slipped disc indicates a problem in the rubbery cushions.
Each disc has two parts. The softer and gelatinous inner part is the nucleus pulposus, and the tough outer layer is the annulus fibrosus. When the stronger outer section ruptures, the gel-like inner section will leak into the spinal canal. You will start experiencing pain and discomfort when the gel and some parts of the outer disc press against the nerve roots that run along the spinal axis.
Disc herniation is often the result of wear and tear of the disk with age. Over time, the spinal discs gradually lose the fluid volume causing degenerative disc disease.
There is a chance of slipped disc in any part of the spine, beginning from the neck to the lower back. Maximum case reports involve issues in the lower back. So the common area for herniated disk is the lower back part. There is an intricate network of blood vessels and nerves in and around the spinal column. The medical condition will exert undue pressure on the muscles and nerves, causing much pain.
The general symptoms include
The nature of pain can vary from person to person. It can affect your conscious control ability on the muscles. Therefore, consult a doctor immediately if you notice these symptoms.
Causes of Herniated Disk
Disc herniation is often the result of wear and tear of the disk with age. Over time, the spinal discs gradually lose the fluid volume causing degenerative disc disease. The continuous wear will cause microscopic cracks on the outer surface. The gel-like interior thus gets an escape route.
Certain motions can also be responsible for herniated disk. Overstressing the spinal disc by lifting or twisting something heavy is possible. This will rupture the disc due to high-impact trauma. That is why you can suffer from the condition after an accident or slip-and-fall case too.
Most people can't pinpoint the exact reason leading to the herniated disk. But there are certain factors that increase your risk of disk herniation.
Don't ignore the tingling sensation that indicates herniated-disk-or-slipped-disc. It is absolutely essential to consult a doctor if you think that the numbness is increasing. Seek medical attention when you notice that the pain is traveling from the neck down the arms and legs.
If you think that prevention is better than cure, then do the following to avoid disk herniation:
Most patients respond well to non-surgical treatment procedures. The doctor will encourage you to adopt healthy lifestyle practices along with some stretching exercises. Physiotherapy can help a lot to reduce pain and further degeneration.
Spinal surgeries are helpful when the non-surgical strategies don't work.
Limitations in mobility are something that you cant avoid when you are suffering from herniated disk or slipped disc, if the condition is not good, then the doctor will suggest restricting some movements. It will repeatedly prevent pressure on the same section, which will ooze out further fluid from the cushions.
Physiotherapy goes a long way in reducing the pain of herniated disk or slipped disc and improving the condition. Constant pain will be your partner unless you follow the exercise regime according to the medical practitioner's instructions. Otherwise, the numbness will increase and spread to the upper parts of the spinal column too.