Home » Spine Conditions » Degenerative Disc Disease » Three helpful hints for those suffering from degenerative disc disease
Degenerative disc disease is a common condition that affects most adults to some extent once they reach age 50. Since the spine makes bending and twisting of the body possible, it endures a great deal of wear and tear through the years. The spinal discs, which cushion the vertebrae of the spine and serve as shock absorbers, endure a large share of the pressure placed on the spine and can begin to deteriorate if they become brittle or lose water content. Disc degeneration is most common in the cervical spine (neck area) and lumbar spine (lower back area), because these are the areas of the spine that experience the most daily movement.
What to know about spinal disc degeneration
There are several important things to know if you suffer from degenerative disc disease. They include:
- The specific conditions caused by disc degeneration. Bulging and ruptured discs are two of the more common conditions that can occur when a spinal disc degenerates. Spondylolisthesis, or the displacement of a vertebra, is also possible.
- The symptoms that can appear. While many individuals with degenerative disc disease never experience discomfort, symptoms can appear if the condition causes pressure to be put on the spinal cord or a nerve root. When this happens, numbness, tingling, muscle weakness and pain (both localized and radiating) can occur.
- The nonsurgical treatment options available to you. When used for several weeks or months, a combination of conservative and alternative treatments can help you find the relief you are looking for. Options include stretching and strengthening exercises, pain medications, chiropractic care, massage therapy and hot/cold therapy.
Surgical degenerative disc disease treatment
If your symptoms persist and are affecting your daily life after several months of conservative and alternative treatment, you may need to consider spine surgery. While your physician may recommend open neck or back surgery, USA Spine Care’s minimally invasive procedures are a safer and effective alternative to traditional open spine surgery.^ If you would like to learn more or find out if you are a candidate for our outpatient procedures, contact USA Spine Care today.
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