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If you're experiencing unaccountable symptoms such as neck or back pain, numbness on your fingers, tingling in your toes, or weakness in an arm or leg, then you may be having a close encounter of the worst kind with a herniated disc. Injury to the delicate "cushions" between your spinal vertebrae can produce serious, annoying or even debilitating problems along major nerve pathways. Fortunately, our skilled chiropractor at Proctor Chiropractic can provided the necessary treatment for herniated discs to heal themselves naturally, with no need for surgery or drugs.
A herniated disc is not the same thing as a bulging or "slipped" disc, although both conditions can produce similar problems. A bulging disc has shifted out of place slightly within the spinal column so that part of it presses against nearby nerve roots. In the case of a herniated disc, the disc itself remains in its proper position, but part of its outer casing splits open, allowing the gelatinous hydrated cartilage within to push its way out and press against nerve roots. Herniated discs are actually more likely to cause pain than bulging discs. Any disc along the spinal column can herniate, and the symptoms vary according to which of the spinal nerve roots are impinged. A herniation in the cervical spinal region, for instance, may cause neck pain along with tingling, shooting pains, numbness or muscle weakness in the arms or hands. A herniation in the lumbar region can pinch the sciatic nerve, producing similar symptoms in the lower back, buttocks, legs and feet (a situation also known as sciatica).
Herniated discs can have a variety of causes. Years of spinal wear and tear, aggravated by misalignment and posture problems, can cause progressive degeneration of the discs. A weakened disc is vulnerable to herniation from even a slight trauma. More serious traumas such as sports injuries or auto accident injuries can herniate even the most robust discs.
Your spinal discs have the power to heal themselves, but only if they are given the proper opportunity and conditions to do so. Chiropractic treatment uses gentle, non-invasive techniques to accomplish that goal for our patients in Proctor, Tacoma, Lakewood, Gig Harbor, Federal Way, Fife and the surrounding communities. We always perform a detailed spinal evaluation to determine the location and severity of the problem before recommending a course of treatment.
One of the most effective techniques our chiropractor employs for herniated discs is spinal decompression. This precisely-controlled form of distraction therapy takes pressure off of the discs while creating negative pressure that draws the cartilaginous "filling" back inside the disc, relieving nerve pressure and pulling nutrients into the disc so it can heal itself more quickly. Traditional chiropractic adjustment can correct a misalignment that may be making you more prone to herniated discs. Exercises can then add muscular support to your spinal column for additional protection. Contact Proctor Chiropractic today at 253-756-7500!