People have been told for years about arthritis and it’s effects, however most people associate degenerative changes in their extremities, hands, knees, or hips. Typically with arthritis, they feel aches and pains of a deep, boring nature. Heat may also be associated with this kind of problem although it’s felt more often in accessible joints – in the extremities. Bony degeneration can also occur in the spine, and depending on the severity, can become quite debilitating. Most often, patients will notice a loss of their range-of-motion, stiffness or inflexibility and just assume it to be the aging process. But this problem takes such a long time to develop that the loss of range goes relatively unnoticed.
Degeneration of the spine usually occurs with age, but typically there is also a history in the persons lifestyle of something happening in order to bring out such a reaction in the body. Joints will typically form some degree of wear and tear with time, but when it becomes advanced(moderate or severe) at a localized level of the spine, the closely-protected nervous system may be exposed to injury by the exact thing that was structurally formed to protect it. Most people are unaware of the condition of their spines, and as a result do not know of the slow, insidious onset of bony degeneration. Others who have had injuries to their spines thru trauma, contact sports, or abnormal wear can attest that once the integrity of the spine gets lost, the degeneration quickens.
Once your chiropractor takes a complete history about the area, range of motion studies and orthopedic testing will be performed in order to determine the extent of the motion loss and tissues involved. Diagnosing spinal degeneration is usually confirmed with plain film X-rays. Should there be radiating pains in moderate to severe cases, further studying may be recommended in order to determine the extent of the degeneration.
Chiropractors are very widely regarded as physicians who improve range of motion, remove subluxations, and restore normal nerve function to the body. So typically, pursuing treatment thru chiropractic almost seems well-suited for this problem. Once all the testing is performed and treatment is approved, the restoration of function begins, quite often felt on your first visit!