What Degenerative Disc Disease is and What You can do About it
General Information on Degenerative Disc Disease:
- Degenerative Disc Disease is back pain caused by a damaged intervertebral disc.
- Intervertebral discs are gel like shock absorbers in between each vertebra in the spine. The discs allow movement and flexibility of the spine.
- These discs can be damaged from wear and tear and also due to the aging process. As we age the discs can shrink and dry out. Once a disc is damaged it can’t repair itself causing degeneration. This degeneration causes a loss of flexibility and decreased ability to absorb shock in the spine.
- Signs and symptoms include: back pain that is worse when sitting, bending, twisting, or lifting, periods of severe pain that come and go, numbness or tingling in the extremities, feeling better while lying down, walking or changing positions frequently.
- Using hands on techniques to decrease pain and improve mobility of joints and muscles
- Assessing and improving posture
- Developing core strengthening exercises to support the spine
- Recommending activity modifications and spine safety
Exercise Example to try:
- Double Knees to Chest (pictured above, right): Lie on your back and gently pull your knees towards your chest hold for 30 seconds and repeat 4 times.
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