NYSportsandSpinal_Understanding Herniated Discs

NEWSLETTER October 2019

UNDERSTANDING HERNIATED DISCS

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There are some back injuries, however, that are even more painful than your run-of-the-mill back pain. A herniated disc is one of the most painful back injuries that you can experience, and it is far more common than you may be initially aware. What is a Herniated Disc? Your spine is made up of a series of interlocking bones with small cushions in-between each joint socket. The structure of your spine is what allows you to move freely from side to side. Every time you crunch your abdomen by bending forward, or lean to one side or another for a deep stretch, those little vertebral bodies move with you, keeping you comfortable and your back strong. Without cushioning in between each of those sockets, the bones would rub against one another with every movement, and this would be incredibly painful.

When a disc becomes herniated, the cushioning in between the vertebrae will rupture, essentially deflating the cushioning in between the vertebrae and causing the bones to begin to rub against one another. This is painful enough as it is, but can become even more painful if the herniated disc actually begins to press on the adjacent spinalnerves,causing thepain tospread even further up the spine. The most common placement for a herniateddisc isat the lumbarvertebrae in the lower back. While it is not the only reason that pain can become severe in the lower back, it is definitely one of the most severe forms of back pain. If you suspect that you may have experienced a herniated disc it is important that you seek medical attention, such as from your physical therapist. A herniated disc willnothealon itsown,andworkingwith a physical therapist is one of the best ways to experience relief from the pain associated with this common concern.

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