Spinal Health Prevents Disc Degeneration
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Car alignment depends largely on the durability of tires combined with the structure and function of the axle. Unbalanced alignment promotes the breakdown of one side of the car due to an increase in asymmetrical load. The rate and progression of the breakdown of a car or spine depends on the presence of proper alignment.
24 hard vertebral bones make up the spine. 23 of these bones maintain flexibility and comfort through the function of structures called discs that are made up of 70% water and 30% soft tissue. These intervertebral discs live between the bones and provide separation and protection for the elements functioning between the vertebrae. The spinal nerve serves as the most important structure exiting through the disc openings between each bone. Spinal nerves extend off the spinal cord at each level of the spine and transverse through a disc-sized hole created by the space between each bone. The spinal nerve relays life-giving information from the brain to the entire body. The intervertebral discs absorb shock and cushion stress created in the spine from moving, jumping, and bending. Alignment plays an essential role in maintaining spinal protection and allowing the nervous system to function at optimal capacity.
Abnormal movement or alignment of a spinal vertebra leads to minor asymmetries in the spine that increase rates of disc degeneration and arthritis. A much bigger consequence translates from nervous system interference that stems from even minor spinal misalignments. These misalignments (called subluxations) increase tension and disturbance in the most important functional system in the body. Nervous system interference puts the body into a state of dysfunction that eventually leads to deteriorating health and the increased risk of symptoms and disease.
New research shows that small asymmetries in the spine and discs create disc problems that manifest in the form of pain and disc disease. The study stated that asymmetric distribution of herniated discs cause an altered mechanical load. Patients with herniated lumbar discs often undergo unnecessary surgery at the recommendation of medical physicians. The study quickly points out that an enormous percentage of people with low back disc problems fail to improve even after what doctors determine to be successful spine surgeries. A substantial risk of continued pain and problems still exists following a spinal surgery that goes as planned.
Professional athletes make millions of dollars rooted in physical performance. Many well-known individuals warrant consistent media coverage following the deterioration of their skill set due to degenerative spinal health. Tiger Woods projected to be the greatest golfer of all time at one point in his career. Woods endured four spinal surgeries in the past four years but continues to suffer from declining performance and increased scrutiny. Woods recently made the news for an arrest stemming from falling asleep asleep at the wheel of his vehicle while driving under the influence of prescription pain killers used to deal with his back problems. Steve Kerr earned acclaim as a player on several NBA championship teams before earning two world championships as the head coach of the Golden State Warriors. Kerr missed major portions of the past two seasons due to the aggravating pain radiating through his body following a failed back surgery. Kerr used the media to voice his regret that he did not seek an alternative solution. Both Kerr and Woods face amplified adversity that now includes continued back pain combined with additional challenges resulting from either pain or prescription drug use.
Movement, spinal strength, and conservative care continues to be the most effective form of treatment for problems attributed to spinal asymmetry. Chiropractors correct spinal subluxations through scientifically proven treatments that offer hope and health to every individual.
Asian Journal of Neurosurgery April-June 2017 “Neglected knowledge: Asymmetric features of lumbar disc disease.”
A Kanat, U Yazar, B Ozdemir, H Kazdal, MS Balik