Spinal stenosis commonly affects people over the age of 50. However, you can suffer from it at any age. Symptoms are often similar to that of a pinched nerve due to the vertebrae pinching a spinal cord. Chiropractic care for spinal stenosis is a great, non-invasive way to fix this ailment.
What is spinal stenosis?
One of the spinal canal’s primary functions is to protect the spinal cord, which controls the central nervous system and sends movement information to the brain. The spinal cord is made up of discs and vertebrae that absorb shocks to the spine while walking or moving.
Spinal stenosis occurs when the spinal canal narrows.
When the spinal canal narrows, this causes pain. This pain stems from the spaces between the vertebrae being pushed together and pinching the spinal cord. The narrowing also puts pressure on the nerves surrounding the spine while doing everyday activities.
Two types of spinal stenosis
There are two main types of spinal stenosis: cervical stenosis and lumbar stenosis.
Cervical stenosis happens when the narrowing occurs closer to the neck and upper back region. Lumbar stenosis is when the spinal canal of your lower back narrows.
Chiropractic care for spinal stenosis can treat both types of spinal stenosis.
Spinal Stenosis Symptoms
Lumbar stenosis is more common. This is what most people think of when they think of back pain. Often a lower back alignment done by a Chiropractor can help alleviate the symptoms.
Walking when you have lower back pain, especially up and down stairs, can be unbearable. If this is a symptom, sitting or leaning forward can help alleviate that pain momentarily.
Narrowing in the lumbar vertebrae may also cause numbness, tingling, cramping pain in the legs and feet. In very extreme cases lumbar stenosis can cause abnormal bowel function, painful bladder functions, and even incontinence in some cases.
Cervical stenosis can have very different symptoms. Cervical stenosis is not nearly as common, but it can be very dangerous.
When narrowing occurs in the cervical region, it can cause direct compression to the spinal cord. This narrowing causes weakness, radiating pain, and numbness. Due to where these symptoms are located, it may affect both arms and hands. In extreme cases, it can cause partial or complete body paralysis.
Spinal Stenosis Causes
Most commonly spinal stenosis is caused by the daily wear and tear to the spine related to osteoarthritis. Lack of motion or misalignment of the vertebrae commonly causes osteoarthritis. Osteoarthritis causes bone spurs, which can grow into the spinal canal causing it to narrow and creates spinal stenosis.
There are many other causes of spinal stenosis. Herniated discs, thickened ligaments, tumors, cysts, poor posture, or previous spinal injuries can all cause narrowing of the spinal canal.
Spinal Stenosis Treatments
Chiropractic care for spinal stenosis in Garden City, Mi is a great non-surgical way to treat spinal stenosis. Chiropractors can use massaging techniques to soothe the surrounding muscles and the affected discs. A trained professional can also show patients the best stretches to improve spinal flexibility and strengthen surrounding muscles; this helps lessen spinal stenosis pain.
Spine alignments, traction therapy, and depressive therapy are all other ways a chiropractor can help alleviate this ailment. Future adjustments and treatments may be needed to improve the overall spine’s health. A trained professional can help determine what treatment best suits individual’s needs.