Your spine consists of 24 vertebrae stacked on top of each other with flexible cushions called intervertebral discs separating each set of vertebrae. A disc is made up of two components. The inner disc, called the nucleus pulposis, is like a ball of jelly about the size of a marble. The nucleus pulposis is surrounded by the outer part of the disc called the annulus fibrosis.
Injuries to intervertebral discs begin when the innermost fibers of the annulus fibrosis are damaged. This can happen if you sit for long periods, lift heavy weights with improper form, or with sudden unguarded movements.
As the inner fibers become damaged, the nucleus pulposis begins to push outward, traveling through the gaps of injured fibers. Over time, if more fibers of the annulus are damaged, the nucleus can travel further backward, which may result in the outer part of the intervertebral disc bulging or protruding outward.
Those who have damaged the intervertebral discs may notice that their low back pain is worst first thing in the morning, and gets worse after sitting for long periods or bending forward. If you have injured one of the intervertebral discs in your neck, you may notice looking down increases your pain. If the injury to your disc continues to progress, it may result in sciatica type symptoms where you notice numbness or tingling in your arms or legs.
If you are experiencing neck or low back pain, E3 Chiropractic + Wellness in Saskatoon is here to help! We will perform a thorough examination to determine if you have damaged an intervertebral disc and give you the tools you need to get free from pain so that your body performs and feels better than you ever thought possible.