picture of a herniated disc or bulging disc
Chiropractic Care for a Herniated Disc

What is a Herniated Disc or a Bulging Disc?

The spine is made up of bones called vertebrae. In between each bone is a flexible disc with strong fibrous outer layers and a gel centre. Housed inside the vertebrae is the spinal cord, the continuation of the brain and brain stem. Nerves from the cord branch off, passing through the openings between each vertebral body forming a communication between the brain and the body.

When the disc gets damaged through trauma or through repetitive strain or degeneration, the fibrous outer layers may tear, resulting in protrusion (sticking out) of the inner gel component. The protrusion may then compress the spinal cord or nerve resulting in pain at the site of injury and into the arms and legs (the extremities).

How can a Chiropractor Help with a Bulging or Herniated Disc?

Chiropractic adjustments have been shown to be an effective method for helping to restore the integrity of the discs thereby relieving pressure on the nerves, decreasing pain and increasing function.

Medications for Disc Herniation

NSAIDs or Non-steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs

All NSAIDS come with the risk of gastrointestinal ulceration and bleeding.

Cox-2 Inhibitors

Cox-2 inhibitors were developed to reduce the risk of GI ulcers. They did not, though, eliminate it. In fact, another major issue emerged with these drugs: the possibility of severe and deadly vascular problems with long-term use, including heart attack and stroke. Two Cox-2 inhibitors, rofecoxib (Vioxx) and valdecoxib (Bextra), were withdrawn from the market because of this. Celecoxib (Celebrex) is still available.

Acetaminophen(Tylenol)

This drug is known to cause liver damage, especially when taking too much or if taken with alcohol. Acetaminophen is present in many medications, from cold medicines and over-the-counter pain relievers to prescription drugs such as Percocet and Vicodin, users may not realize they are taking too much when they are combining these medications. Acetaminophen is one of the leading causes of drug overdose that present to emergency rooms.

Alternative Medicine Treatments for Disc Herniation

Acupuncture

Acupuncture is an amazing pain reliever that comes with minimal side effects (bruising, transient discomfort).

Natural Anti-inflammatories

Nature has provided a number of anti-inflammatory plants that do not cause bleeding or ulcers, such as Curcumin and Boswellia.

Registered Massage Therapy

Disc herniation can cause painful spasms in the muscles of the back and/or legs to immobilize the area.  Massage therapy can help relieve muscle spasms associated with a herniated disc.