Bone & Joint Chiropractic Center: Combating a Strenuous Lifestyle 

Bone & Joint Chiropractic Center: Combating a Strenuous Lifestyle 

Bone & Joint Chiropractic Center: Combating a Strenuous Lifestyle
By: Dr. Kate Wagner

Many people experience painful disc herniations, but things can be done to reduce the risk. The spine consists of bones that stack like blocks, and discs in between them. The discs are covered with ligaments on the outside, and the inside contains a jelly-like fluid.

Research shows that disc injuries actually result from long-term, repetitive damage. Any movement that compresses the spine (lifting heavy objects) or flexes the spine (bending forward) contributes to this damage by creating small tears in the protective ligaments around the disc.

The ligaments don’t have a good blood supply, so they do not repair well. Performing these movements frequently over time (for women in particular, lifting up children improperly) may allow the fluid on the inside to leak through the tears. This fluid is irritating to the spinal nerves and creates inflammation, which is why patients experience pain, numbness, or tingling.

Discs may take weeks or months to fully recover, but there are preventive steps. Practice lifting with your knees – placing your feet farther apart will help. Lift heavy objects from a table or other high surface – for example, pick up children from a chair and not from the ground. Never twist while bent forward.

My office utilizes a technique called flexion-distraction, during which the Doctor provides a gentle stretch to the low back using a special table. This motion “pumps” the discs, which may promote blood flow and healing. This technique may combat the effects of a strenuous lifestyle on disc health, and may reduce healing time with disc injuries.

Dr. Kate Wagner is a chiropractor at Bone & Joint Chiropractic in O’Fallon, MO at 2917 Highway K. She trained at the Scott Air Force Base clinic and teaches biology at Maryville. Dr. Wagner is certified in Active Release Technique®. This is a soft tissue technique which can relieve pain associated with soft tissues and joints and restore joint motion.

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Reference: lumbar-spine-clinical-outcomes