Functional Friday Episode #17
Feeling Numbness, Tingling, or Sharp/Shooting pain down your leg or arm?
If you are, there is a chance this could be being caused by a disc herniation. The disc is a very unique structure, and I think one of the easiest analogies to think about is thinking of it like a jelly donut. The jelly in the jelly donut resembles the nucleus pulposus of the disc. The nucleus is then surrounded by circular rings that enclose the “jelly”. These rings are called the annulus fibrosis, and they can represent the breading of a donut in this example.
Like I have talked about in past videos, one important factor of disc herniation’s is excessive lumbar spine movement. The causes for this excessive movement can be vast and varying. Depending on one’s habits, activity level, workout regimen, diet, among a myriad of other factors, your disc can become herniated. This means that the jelly part of the jelly donut has been “pushed back” and the breading encasing the jelly has pouched out. In the spine, this outpouching can lead to some nerve compression and inflammation that most typically results in radiation (numbness, tingling, sharp, shooting pain can all be options) down the legs (if the disc herniation was in the cervical spine the radiation symptoms would be down the arms).
So obviously this is something we want to avoid (watch this video to find out some good core stability exercises to avoid problems).
Now IF you already have these symptoms, what should you do? Is it the end of the world?
The answer to that question is a resounding NO. Recent research is showing that up to 2/3 of disc herniation’s will actually resorb. This means that the jelly will go back to the middle of the donut, and all is well! A great way to control pain, while also increasing the healing process in through several technique we utilize in our office. These would be:
- Chiropractic Manipulation/Adjustments – Bring proper movement into the joints.
- Myofascial Release/Instrument Assisted Soft Tissue Mobilization – Helps to physiologically lengthen tissues and relax tight muscles.
- Mckenzie End Range Loading Exercises – Goal is to centralize Disc Herniation Symptoms.
- Core Bracing Exercises – Important for both allowing proper healing while also avoiding more problems later on by being able to activate your core.
The important this is that if you have a disc herniation, this is NOT the end of the world. There is a good chance your symptoms will decrease, and at Premier Chiropractic we can help to show you just how to do that!
Dr. Kirk Mason, Premier Chiropractic