Do You Have a Herniated Disc? Here’s How to Know

Your vertebrae make up your spine, but they don’t sit directly on top of one another. Instead, there’s a small bit of rubbery tissue called an intervertebral disc between each one. These discs allow you to move and provide cushioning for your vertebrae. 

If one of your discs is damaged, the gel-like material in it can cause it to bulge. Such a bulge can pinch nerves and cause pain and other symptoms. At Easley Spine & Disc, Dr. Adam Gentry can diagnose and treat disc problems

No serious injury necessary

Although you may develop a herniated disc because of an injury or excessive strain, often disc injuries are the result of seemingly harmless activities. That’s because as you age, your intervertebral discs become less flexible and drier, which leaves them susceptible to damage. Even completely normal, everyday actions can result in a herniated disk that isn’t flexible. That means you can get a herniated disc just by lifting a heavy object or turning and twisting at the same time.

You might feel radiculopathy

Your nerves have roots near your spine, and when a disc bulges, those nerve roots may be compressed or irritated. The result is radiating pain, which is called radiculopathy. The symptoms you feel involve nerves and vary depending on where they occur in your spine, but often include:

Your symptoms are likely to be worse at night, and you may only feel them on one side of your body. 

Risk factors could make a difference

Although it’s possible for any person to experience the discomfort of a herniated disc, there are some risk factors that make it more likely, such as: 

In order to protect yourself, practice good posture, keep your weight in a healthy range, and do strength training exercises so that the muscles that support your spine are strong. 

Treatments are available 

Dr. Gentry evaluates your condition and takes into account your medical history, symptoms, and goals. His treatment plan is designed specifically for you, and he develops it in close consultation with you. Treatments for herniated disc issues often include a combination of approaches, like: 

We can help relieve your back pain at one of our convenient locations throughout Kentucky, Indiana, and Illinois. Contact us by calling Easley Spine & Disc or by booking an appointment online today.

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