Monday, 8 January 2018

Things That Causes Degenerative Disc Disease You Should Note

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Degenerative disc disease refers to symptoms of back or neck pain caused by wear-and-tear on a spinal disc. In some cases, degenerative disc disease also causes weakness, numbness, and hot, shooting pains in the arms or legs (radicular pain). Degenerative disc disease typically consists of a low-level chronic pain with intermittent episodes of more severe pain. Painful disc degeneration is common in the neck (cervical spine) and lower back (lumbar spine). These areas of the spine undergo the most motion and stress, and are most susceptible to disc degeneration.
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Degenerative disc disease may result in back or neck pain, but this varies from person to person. Many people have no pain, while others with the same amount of disc damage have severe pain that limits their activities. Where the pain occurs depends on the location of the affected disc. An affected disc in the neck area may result in neck or arm pain, while an affected disc in the lower back may result in pain in the back, buttock, or leg. The pain often gets worse with movements such as bending over, reaching up, or twisting. The pain may start after a major injury (such as from a car accident), a minor injury (such as a fall from a low height), or a normal motion (such as bending over to pick something up). It may also start gradually for no known reason and get worse over time.

Causes Of Degenerative Disc Disease
For some of us, degenerative disc disease is part of the natural process of growing older. As we age, our intervertebral discs can lose their flexibility, elasticity, and shock-absorbing characteristics. For others, degenerative disc disease can stem from an injury to the back, the causes of this disease includes -

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Disc structure : very small tears or cracks develop in the outer layer of the disc. The soft and gelatinous material in the inner part may seep through the cracks or tears, resulting in a bulging or rupturing disc. The disc may break into fragments.
  The loss of fluid in your discs : This reduces the ability of the discs to act as shock absorbers and makes them less flexible. Loss of fluid also makes the disc thinner and narrows the distance between the vertebrae.
    Factors that can speed up this process include:
◾Obesity
◾Strenuous physical work
◾Tobacco smoking
◾An acute, or sudden, injury, such as a fall.

A sudden (acute) injury leading to a herniated disc (such as a fall) may also begin the degeneration process. As the space between the vertebrae gets smaller, there is less padding between them, and the spine becomes less stable. The body reacts to this by constructing bony growths called bone spurs (osteophytes).


Bone spurs can put pressure on the spinal nerve roots or spinal cord, resulting in pain and affecting nerve function.



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Author: Richard Smith