Educate, Inform, Empower

Do I have a slipped disc?

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Did I slip a disc? Many people in Grand Rapids, Michigan believe that they have slipped a disc. I hear this comment frequently, however, that is not what is really happening. Discs don’t slip, they bulge, herniate, and rupture. The actual disc is very tightly adhered to the bone. What happens is when the deep stabilizer muscles compress the disc it will compress and bulge out the side like a tube of toothpaste when you step on the tube. Trauma can also cause compression on the disc, like falling off a ladder. So does everyone with back pain have a disc problem?

In a ground breaking study performed by the New England Journal of Medicine, 98 asymptomatic (pain free) people were given MRI examinations to determine the presence or absence of lumbar disc herniations. The findings were surprising. Of the 98 individuals examined only 36% (about 36 people) had what doctors consider “normal discs at all levels”. Over 52% had at least one disc bulge while 27% had at least one disc herniation! So, you may have a disc problem and not even feel it! Depending on the severity of the disc problem, and the location of the bulging/herniation/rupture, you may have no symptoms at all. Many times the symptoms people feel are not from the disc, but from the surrounding tissues that are often damaged too. By properly rehabing these tissues, many patients can reduce and eliminate their pain and numbness.  Chiropractors are ideally trained to decompress the disc and relax the surrounding muscles.  There are also some at home tools you can use to help with muscle tightness and spasm.  The biostick is a great tool that allows you to work on yourself in conjunction with a therapy plan.

To find out if a natural holistic approach could benefit your specific situation, contact our office and schedule an evaluation. iChiro Clinics has two locations in Grand Rapids. The north office is at 4150 E. Beltline, Grand Rapids, MI, 49525, 616-447-9888. The south office is at 6750 Kalamazoo, Grand Rapids, MI, 49508, 616-656-1830.

Dr. Kwast is the CEO of iChiro Clinics in Grand Rapids, Michigan. He is a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist, and a wellness speaker for the Foundation for Wellness Professionals, and the Employee Awareness Association. iChiro Clinics has received the 2014 Better Business Bureau’s Torch Award for Ethics, and the Grand Rapids Magazine’s reader poll award for the Best of Grand Rapids.

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