Chronic back and neck pain can be a debilitating condition that affects a patient’s quality of life and overall health and wellness. Today, people face chronic neck, back and leg pain for a number of reasons, including lifestyle, diet and overall stress levels. Patients are also commonly faced with recurring pain from previous injuries or even misdiagnosis of conditions.
While there are plenty of ways to manage and reduce levels of chronic pain, many people are choosing non-surgical options as part of an overall holistic approach to their wellness. Chiropractic care is an alternative form of medical treatment that’s practiced from a natural and nonsurgical standpoint.
For those who want to explore alternative treatments for improving and eliminating chronic back pain, there are plenty of options. Nonsurgical spinal decompression therapy is one such option that serves as a holistic approach to managing and eliminating back pain. The focus of spinal decompression therapy is entirely on restorative patient health and is administered by chiropractors.
Chiropractors are experts trained in safe and natural methods of treating chronic back pain and other conditions that can affect daily life. Spinal decompression is an innovative treatment that’s used by trained health professionals, and has proven to be successful for many patients.
Read on to find out if spinal decompression is right for you and your chronic back pain symptoms, and how your chiropractor can use this therapy to improve your health.
What is Spinal Decompression?
The type of spinal decompression we will explore is called non-surgical spinal decompression therapy. It’s a holistic therapy treatment administered by trained chiropractors, osteopaths and other certified healthcare professionals. This type of therapy doesn’t involve any invasive surgery or pharmaceutical medications.
Spinal decompression therapy involves the practitioner deliberately stretching the spine and restoring its natural health using specialized equipment. The ultimate goal is to help relieve back, neck and leg pain over time. Spinal decompression therapy is a long-term approach to treating patients naturally in an environment that supports the individual’s health and wellness goals.
Numerous studies show that nonsurgical spinal decompression therapy is an effective way of treating and eliminating chronic back pain safely. Whether it’s to improve mobility, reduce pain, increase range of motion or any number of other health intentions, spinal decompression can help many patients take their wellness to a new level.
Spinal Decompression as Holistic Wellness Treatment
As the average American’s lifestyle grows more and more stressful, there are increasing instances of chronic pain sufferers. The National Library of Medicine estimates that more than 76 million Americans suffer from some sort of chronic pain. Chronic pain forms most commonly in the back, neck, shoulders and legs. It’s often the result of tense muscles combined with sedentary lifestyles and poor diet, injuries that healed improperly or conditions that weren’t adequately diagnosed.
With the growing awareness of the impact that chronic pain has on the human body, patients are looking for alternative ways to treat their conditions. Instead of, or in addition to, surgical or biomedical treatment, holistic therapy is helping patients treat their chronic pain in a natural way.
With holistic wellness treatments, the focus isn’t solely on treating physical symptoms. Rather, holistic therapy aims to provide a long-term, natural approach to treating the source of the condition. This effectively takes into consideration the patient’s body, overall well-being and enjoyment of life.
How Does Spinal Decompression Work?
Non-surgical spinal decompression therapy uses computerized equipment to help treat spinal discs that have become weak or vulnerable due to tension and wear and tear over time, or as the result of an injury. The process of decompressing spinal discs relieves tension and pressure between the vertebrae. This ultimately leads to alleviating the patient’s symptoms, like spasms and radiating pain in the back and legs.
When you’re treated using spinal decompression therapy, you are fitted with a harness or strap that’s used as leverage to decompress your spine. You lie flat on a computerized table, either on your back or stomach. Your chiropractor will operate the computer, and the mechanism then gently pulls you via the strap in a slow and controlled manner.
This pulling action lightly stretches spinal discs or “decompresses” them. This pulling action creates a negative pressure that draws bulging and herniated discs back into the center of the disc. Over time, this allows the spinal discs to benefit from increased fluid, oxygen, nutrients and blood flow, which improves the health of the disc. As the disc becomes healthier, it becomes stronger as well, which helps to eliminate your chronic pain over time.
This is a natural healing process that allows the discs to repair themselves without surgery or medications. It’s also a solution for sciatica pain management to help treat radiating leg pain. By its very nature, therapy provides a long-term process designed to rehabilitate your health over time.
What to Expect During Spinal Decompression Therapy
If you’re considering pursuing spinal decompression therapy for your chronic neck and back pain, you’ll likely want to know what to expect. Spinal decompression therapy is a non-invasive and gentle holistic therapy practice. Here are some ideas of what to expect during therapy to help answer any concerns you may have:
- You remain fully clothed during the treatment.
- Treatment may take up to 30 minutes per session.
- It is a slow and controlled process.
- Treatment isn’t painful, but rather gentle and relatively unnoticeable.
- Treatment can occur multiple times a week over several weeks, as needed.
The whole procedure occurs in multiple cycles of three to five minutes throughout one session. The process is fully automated and is administered by a professional technician who can help answer any questions you may have along the way.
When to Use Spinal Decompression
Spinal decompression therapy is used in a number of instances that involve chronic neck and back pain. Some of these instances include:
- When chronic pain is affecting daily quality of life.
- When the patient chooses an alternative treatment over surgery.
- When a patient has suffered a herniated disc.
- When a patient has suffered a back or neck injury.
- When old injuries begin to cause health problems years later.
- When patients are seeking a complementary medical treatment after surgery.
Often times, patients begin spinal decompression therapy after having had surgery (or multiple surgeries) to correct an injury. Many patients continue to experience chronic neck and back pain even after surgical operations. This is often referred to as “failed back syndrome,” which is general term for chronic back pain that persists after multiple failed surgical procedures.
Patients may also choose non-surgical decompression therapy without ever having had surgery before. If patients have been taking medications like nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications (NSAIDs) or corticosteroid injections, they may turn to spinal decompression therapy as a long-term solution.
In some instances, patients turn to spinal decompression therapy as a complementary treatment alongside other holistic health approaches. These other approaches may include acupuncture, physiotherapy, occupational therapy and other methods of chiropractic care for herniated discs and back pain.
What Symptoms Does Spinal Decompression Treat?
Spinal decompression is a holistic therapy that’s used over time to treat a variety of symptoms caused by different conditions. Symptoms can be caused by issues such as a herniated disc, sciatica, spinal stenosis and more. Oftentimes, symptoms are either disregarded or misdiagnosed. This causes patients to suffer from recurrent symptoms that may worsen over time.
Spinal decompression therapy can help treat the following chronic neck and back pain symptoms:
- Neck pain
- Pain at the base of the skull
- Upper back and shoulder pain
- Arm pain
- Lower back pain
- Pain running down outer leg
- Hip and buttocks pain
- Muscle spasms
- Tingling and numbness
- Overall core and back weakness
- Muscle tension
- Spinal soreness
- Stiffness and mobility issues
- Wear and tear on spinal joints
Some patients may only experience one type of symptom, whereby pain is isolated to one particular area such as the lower back. Other patients may develop more of these symptoms over time after chronic pain persists untreated for several years. Depending on thecondition, many patients may experience a combination of several of these symptoms throughout their lives.
Without proper treatment that addresses the direct cause of the pain, patients may face a growing number of symptoms or worsening of symptoms throughout their lives.
Conditions Treated by Spinal Decompression
Spinal decompression therapy is designed specifically to treat a number of similar or related conditions involving the spine. Spinal decompression therapy is typically used as an appropriate treatment for the following conditions:
- Herniated or bulging discs
- Spinal stenosis
- Degenerative disc disease
- Facet joint syndrome
Herniated disc: Most commonly, a herniated disc is what causes symptoms of chronic neck and back pain. A herniated disc occurs when the substance of the disc in between each spinal vertebrae becomes ruptured or disturbed and pushes itself out of its tough exterior.
Spinal Stenosis: Spinal stenosis is a condition that occurs when there is a narrowing of the spaces within your spine. These narrowing spaces add pressure on the spinal cord and nerves that travel to the arms and legs. Wear and tear on spinal joints caused by injury or osteoporosis can cause spinal stenosis and chronic lower back pain.
Sciatica: Sciatica is a chronic condition whereby radiating pain travels down the sciatic nerve, traveling from your lower back through your hips and buttocks and down the outside of each leg. It usually affects one side of the body worse than the other. It can occur because of a herniated or bulging disc or other conditions, like spinal stenosis.
Degenerative Disc Disease: When a spinal disc becomes damaged, it can cause a condition referred to as degenerative disc disease. This is a condition that most people experience as they age, but to varying degrees. When the damage to the disc becomes severe enough that it causes inflammation, it can produce chronic symptoms such as numbness and weakness in the back and legs.
Facet Joint Syndrome: A common cause of chronic lower back and neck pain is facet joint syndrome. This is a broad term that describes joint pain between two spinal vertebrae. Unlike other spinal conditions, facet joint syndrome occurs when the cartilage between joints gradually wears away due to aging or overuse. It may also occur because of an injury that hasn’t healed or been treated correctly.
Conditions Not Treated by Spinal Decompression
If you currently have any fractures, tumors or advanced osteoporosis or metal implants in your spine, then nonsurgical spinal decompression is not an appropriate treatment. If you are currently pregnant, then this therapy may not be recommended, either.
Benefits of Spinal Decompression
Spinal decompression therapy is a treatment that offers patients a long-term solution to chronic pain. Many people choose this form of holistic treatment because it provides a number benefits. Some benefits of nonsurgical spinal decompression therapy are:
- Promotes Nutritive Healing: The process of spinal decompression allows for the restoration of spinal disc health by creating a suction that promotes fluid and nutrient uptake to the affected areas. This means the procedure aims to heal and restore the condition over time, as opposed to just treating or masking symptoms.
- Aimed at Long-Term Healing: Because spinal decompression is a therapeutic treatment, it means that it provides a long-term pain management and healing solution. A series of sessions can help provide the healing that’s necessary to reduce or eliminate chronic pain.
- Suitable for a Variety of Patients: Because spinal decompression therapy is a natural form of treatment, it’s suitable for a wide variety of patients with varying types of chronic neck and back pain.
- Practiced by Healthcare Professionals: Chiropractors and other licensed healthcare professionals administer spinal decompression therapy. These are specialized healthcare professionals providing safe and approved methods of spinal joint and nerve treatments.
- Non-Surgical: The fact that nonsurgical decompression therapy doesn’t involve surgical procedures is very appealing to patients who want to avoid operations. This means there’s no painful or sometimes debilitating recovery period to face.
- Drug-Free: Spinal decompression therapy is administered without the use of drugs. Patients benefit from this because there are no drug side effects to be concerned with. Additionally, this treatment is designed to effectively treat chronic pain so patients no longer need to rely on pain medications.
Holistic Treatments for Better Health and Wellness
If you’re looking to improve your health, well-being and the overall quality of your life, you may be interested in holistic treatments such as spinal decompression therapy. This revolutionary therapy has helped countless individuals live pain-free when they didn’t think it was possible.
Spinal decompression therapy is an innovative yet natural way to address the root causes of chronic pain that begin in the spine. This therapy works for most people who pursue it, provided it’s the appropriate therapy for their condition.
If you suffer from chronic back and neck pain, choose Crist Chiropractic for your chiropractor in Franklin, TN. We provide leading-edge technology to perform spinal decompression therapy in Franklin, TN to a number of patients. Our DOC decompression table can be used for your sciatica pain management or chiropractic care for herniated discs.
Have a chiropractor examine your condition to make sure spinal decompression is the right holistic treatment for you. Book an appointment or call our office for premier chiropractic care in Cool Springs, TN.