Your Introductory Guide to Understanding Spinal Decompression

Unleashing Relief: Why Spinal Decompression Might Be Your Answer to Back Pain

Back pain, a prevalent source of chronic discomfort and mobility challenges, affects an estimated 60% to 80% of adults at some point in their lives, disrupting daily activities. The causes of back pain are diverse, encompassing conditions such as arthritis, bulging, or herniated discs, leading to excruciating pain and tingling or numbness in limbs. In pursuit of relief, many individuals with back and neck pain explore options, including the possibility of spinal decompression through surgical interventions.

Luckily, there is another option. Spinal decompression can target specific spinal segments to promote healing and alleviate pain. If you’re seeking back pain relief and you’d like to avoid pain medication or surgery, spinal decompression could be the solution you’ve been looking for.

What is Spinal Decompression?

Spinal decompression is a non-invasive treatment that can target many of the root causes of back and neck pain. Spinal decompression therapy (also called IDD or Intervertebral Differential Dynamics therapy) works by gently stretching the spine and taking pressure off neural pathways in the spine. This pressure reduction creates negative pressure in the disc, promoting the circulation of oxygen and nutrient-rich fluids that can heal discs. Patients often see results after only a few sessions.

Understanding the Mechanism Behind Decompressing the Spine

Often, conditions that cause back pain put pressure on nerves, causing localized pain and numbness or tingling in arms, legs, hands, and feet. Spinal decompression therapy targets these areas to reduce pressure caused by damage or inflammation and alleviate pain.

The process is painless and non-invasive. You’ll lie on a computer-controlled table, operated by your physician, for customized treatment that lasts about 30 or 45 minutes per session. During treatment, the healthcare provider will place a harness around your hips to prevent unwanted movement while actively moving the table in specific directions during your session, aiming to provide traction and relaxation. While you’ll likely feel some stretching in your spine, the treatment is painless.

Healthcare providers customize spinal decompression to your condition so that the treatment may vary from one person to the next. Your physician may instruct you to lay face up or face down, and session length may range from several minutes to over a half hour. With each session, tissues heal, disc height increases, and spinal mobility returns.

Conditions Treated With Spinal Decompression

Spinal decompression therapy can be effective for a variety of back pain conditions. It’s a good option for people who aren’t candidates for surgery and those who prefer to avoid taking medication. You can use it before trying other pain management methods or after drugs and surgery have failed.

These are some of the most common causes of back pain that can be effectively treated with spinal decompression.

  • Sciatica: The sciatic nerve runs from the spine down to the feet. When a bulging or herniated disc or inflammation compresses the nerve, it causes back pain and leg and foot pain or numbness.
  • Non-specific Back Pain: Often, the causes of back pain are difficult to pinpoint. IDD therapy works to create an environment to correct underlying problems and reduce non-specific back pain or pain caused by multiple afflictions.
  • Bulging and Herniated Discs: Bulging discs occur when the outer layer of the disc bulges out. Herniated discs occur when the disc develops small cracks or tears that allow the nucleus to begin to leak out. Both conditions compress nerves, causing significant pain.
  • Degenerative Disc Disease: Due to repetitive wear and tear and age, discs shrink and lose their ability to cushion vertebrae. As a result, multiple conditions like repeated disc herniations and facet syndrome may occur.
  • Facet Syndrome: When ligaments become damaged due to stresses like abrupt movements or lifting, facet joints lose their ability to stabilize the spring. The joints move closer together and rub against one another, causing pain.

Spinal decompression therapy is a safe and effective treatment that requires no needles or incisions. It’s painless and helps naturally maximize spine health. If you’re seeking relief from back pain and you want to avoid surgery, get in touch with the professional team at Dickason Chiropractic to learn more about the benefits of spinal decompression therapy.