The human backbone (spine) is a very complex biological structure. The spine is composed of 26 bone discs that are called “vertebrae”. The complex mechanisms and structures of the spinal column allow us to bend forward, backwards, and side to side. Additionally, the spine carries an electrical system called “nerves” that transmit complex electrochemical messages to our organs, muscles, other skeleton bone structures (arms, hands, feet), and it is all wired back into the brain, our biological computer system.
There are a wide variety of injuries and ailments that can affect the proper functioning of the spine. Infections, injuries, and tumors can lead to different spinal problems, such as spinal stenosis, a herniated disc, arthritis, scoliosis, compression fractures, and many others. In this article, we will focus on a single spinal injury, spinal stenosis, and how the pain from this condition may be improved by chiropractic care.
What is spinal stenosis?
In its simplest definition, spinal stenosis is a narrowing of the spinal column which puts pressure on the spinal nerves. Spinal stenosis mainly affects those over the age of 50 and the elderly population in general.
As some people age, the spinal joints become arthritic and form bone spurs. The ligaments thicken, and the discs may collapse and protrude into the spinal canal. Since there is a limited amount of room within the spinal canal, these intrusions put pressure on the nerves. As a consequence, there is often back and leg pain, which can be made worse by standing or walking.
Symptoms of spinal stenosis are varied and may include pain in the neck or back, pain in the legs and arms, numbness, weakness, or foot problems. Traditional allopathic medical treatment involves surgery, medications, braces, and physical therapy.
In some of the most severe cases, medication is not sufficient to relieve pain, and epidural steroid injections are used to suppress the nerve-pain impulses. When even steroid injections don’t work, surgical decompression may be recommended. Both of these treatments are invasive and potentially dangerous. This is why chiropractic treatment of spinal stenosis may be a better option.
Since the main cause of pain in spinal stenosis is the compression and narrowing of the spinal canal pressing in on the nerves, effective chiropractic treatment would involve manipulating the spine to open up the canals to allow for a natural increased blood flow and less pressure on the nerves. Special spinal decompression manipulation techniques are employed by the skilled chiropractor to relieve pressure on nerves and blood vessels.
Additionally an advanced technique called non-surgical spinal decompression therapy may also be may helpful. This computerized treatment produces negative pressure within the disc, which gives the patient’s body an opportunity to heal naturally.
An added advantage to chiropractic treatment is its cost effectiveness and safety. The risk of injury associated with chiropractic care is exceedingly low. Many thousands of people have obtained relief from overwhelming spinal and back pain, using chiropractic treatment.
In fact, there are many reported instances of people with spinal stenosis, who after repeated failures with traditional therapies, finally found pain relief when they discovered chiropractic treatment for spinal stenosis!
Dr. Robert Hanson is a chiropractor located in Irving, TX who specializes in the treatment of chronic pain. Using unique treatment protocols that combine chiropractic, cold laser therapy and spinal decompression, he has brought relief to thousands of patients.