A slipped disc is one of the most common spinal problems. It is more common in people who are overweight or have a sedentary lifestyle. The condition can cause serious spinal damage, along with pain and discomfort in the back that it affects your daily activities. Here are some of the facts that you need to know about it. A slipped disc can cause serious spinal damage, along with back pain. Given below is a detailed explanation of the condition.
How can slip disc symptoms cause back pain and spinal damage?
To understand how a slipped disc can cause pain and spinal damage, you should know how the spinal column works. The spinal column comprises a series of bones known as vertebrae that are stacked vertically. If you go from the top of the spinal column to the bottom, here’s what the bone formation looks like:
- seven bones present in the cervical spine
- twelve bones present in the thoracic spine
- five bones in the lumbar spine
- sacrum and coccyx at the base
Discs cushion each of the bones to protect them from the shock of daily activities, such as lifting, walking, and running. Now, there are two parts to each disc – a toughened outer ring and a gelatinous inner part.
Weakness or injury might make that inner part protrude from the outer ring, which causes the condition known as a prolapsed, herniated, or slipped disc. When this slipped disc compresses a spinal nerve, you will feel pain and numbness right along that affected nerve. This is how slipped discs bring spinal damage and pain and discomfort in the back.
The symptoms of a slipped discs
Though slipped discs can occur anywhere along the spine, they are most commonly noticed in the lower back. Since the spinal column has a dense network of blood vessels and nerves, a slipped disc can cause some serious discomfort and pain. Some of the most common slip disc symptoms are:
- numbness and pain on a side of the body
- sudden muscle weakness
- pain extending to the legs and arms
- unable to walk even shorter distances
- pain that gets worse at night or when you move suddenly
- pain that gets worse after sitting or standing
- burning, aching, and tingling sensations in that specific area
Can a slipped disc be treated?
A slipped disc can be treated, though the form of treatment depends on the discomfort experienced and the extent of the damage. Physiotherapy can help in strengthening the back and managing the pain. Doctors might also suggest you stop lifting heavy objects or getting into painful positions. You can take over-the-counter medications to deal with the pain.
Doctors might suggest surgery if the symptoms continue for more than six weeks or the pain affects your muscle functions. They will surgically remove the protruding part of the disc while keeping the rest of it intact.
And that’s all! So, if you have been feeling any pain and discomfort in the back, do not ignore it any longer. Get a doctor’s appointment and get yourself checked.