Chiropractic Spinal Decompression Therapy for Herniated Bulging Discs
Lower back pain due to bulging and herniated discs is one of the most popular complaints medical professionals hear. The first course of treatment is medication and physical therapy. Unfortunately, these methods don’t always work. Prior to assuming there is irreversible stenosis and scheduling surgery, it is best to exhaust all the non surgical options. All back surgery comes with major risks and do not always go as planned. Procedures such as foraminotomy, laminectomy should be deferred to other less invasive options have been explored. For example, there’s something called spinal decompression therapy that has seen effective results. Decompression techniques can be done as an alternative to surgery in the cervical, thoracic and lumbar portions of the spine.
Dr. Le of ACN Wellness in Vienna Virginia is a chiropractor who practices functional medicine. He focuses his work on treatments that not only target the pain a patient is experiencing, but also the root cause of the problem. Many times spinal weaknesses can be linked to deficiencies in minerals, proteins and vitamins essential for bone and joint health. Dr. Le will explore the treatments to relieve your painful condition, but also what is necessary to address the reason why the breakdown occurred to begin with.
Surgery is only an option as a last resort. At ACN Wellness, we believe medical conditions can be treated with lifestyle changes and corrective non-surgical therapies. Due to the riskiness of surgery, it is simply not the best route to take when there are non-surgical options that can be just as effective.
How Spinal Decompression Therapy Can Treat Back Pain
Chiropractors use spinal decompression therapy to effectively reduce disc bulges and disc herniations. This can increase spinal mobility and decrease pain and inflammation. Improving function and reducing inflammation can often be to key to restoring health bulging discs and nerve pains like sciatica.
A special piece of equipment is used to gently pull the spine. This can open the disc spaces one to two millimeters. This opening causes a vacuum effect that moves the bulging or herniated tissue away from the nerves (which is what is causing the pain).
Many people confuse spinal decompression with spinal traction. They are not the same. Spinal traction is only a type of decompression therapy. The difference between spinal decompression and spinal traction is that decompression assesses a person’s reactions to the pulling of the spine and alters how much it pulls depending on those reactions. This analysis throughout the therapy produces better results than what spinal traction can do for people.
Another way spinal decompression treats back pain in addition to removing tissue on the nerves is it allows vital nutrients and blood supply to go to the disc. This can allow the natural healing and return to normal spinal range of motion and movement. Bulging or herniated discs create swelling and muscle tension. This restricts nutrients and blood flow to the painful area. With less inflammation in the way, the disc receives what it needs to better restore health.
When spinal decompression is combined with phototherapy or Class IV laser treatments, the rate of healing can increase by as much as 80%. Phototherapy is a type of medical treatment that uses fluorescent lights to treat medical conditions such as low back pain. It is believed the light therapy accelerates connective tissue repair and is an anti-inflammatory agent.
What to Expect During a Spinal Decompression Session
Patients can keep their clothes on during the session. They simply lie down on the motorized decompression table. A harness goes around the hips and attaches near the feet. Only the lower part of the table moves. As the spinal decompression machine moves back and forth, the spine is stretched.
Patients should not feel any pain after the session. Those who do feel pain should not continue with the therapy. The only sensation someone should feel is a stretch in the spine. This is an important part of the therapy as it shows that it is being effective in manipulating the spine.
Sessions usually take 30 to 45 minutes. People may notice results after the first few procedures, but may need up to 15 treatments before they notice a relief in their back pain.
Types of Back Pain Treated with Spinal Decompression Therapy
Spinal or back decompression therapy is effective in treating many different types of back pain:
- Disc Bulging
- Spinal Stenosis
- Degenerative Disc Disease
- Radicular Arm Pain
Who Is a Candidate for Spinal Decompression Therapy
Not everyone can safely have their spine stretched. The following people should NOT have vertebral spine decompression therapy:
- Broken Vertebrae
- Spinal Fusion
- Spinal Implants (artificial disc)
- Failed Back Surgery
- Multiple Surgeries
Those who have suffered from the following medical conditions also should not seek spinal decompression therapy:
- Bone Disease
- Spinal Stenosis
- Spinal Infection
- Spinal Tumor
- Ankylosing Spondylitis
Pregnant women and those who take a blood thinner medication should also not have spinal decompression therapy.
Get Rid of Back Pain with Spinal Decompression Therapy
If you’re suffering from lower back pain and interested in trying spinal decompression therapy, contact Dr. Le.
ACN Wellness is an integrative medical center offering back pain diagnosis and treatment through non-invasive methods. We don’t only relieve your back pain, we eliminate it by treating the root cause of it. Contact ACN Wellness today at 703-729-5600 for an appointment.