Degenerative spine symptoms can take a toll on your daily quality of life. Everyday movements like stretching, tying your shoe, cooking, or gardening can become difficult and painful. While the discomfort of these symptoms may have become a reality that you face day after day, do you really know what is causing the pain, stiffness, numbness, and headaches? Do you feel that you can accurately describe these symptoms to your physician? Below is some information that can help you get to the bottom, and possibly the end, of your degenerative spine symptoms.
In adulthood, spine pain is often caused by a degenerative spine disease. Your spine is made up of a series of joints, ligaments, muscles, intervertebral discs, and vertebrae. Both the joints and intervertebral discs contain cartilage that makes our neck and back movements smooth and comfortable. As we age, this cartilage begins to break down and become brittle, meaning it’s no longer able to sustain the impact of your body’s movements. The breakdown of disc cartilage is called degenerative disc disease, which causes conditions like thinning discs, herniated discs, or bulging discs. The breakdown of joint cartilage is called degenerative spine arthritis, or osteoarthritis, which can lead to the development of a bone spur (which is the body’s reaction to unprotected joints rubbing against each other).
Degenerative spine symptoms for any related condition vary from person to person, but can include:
- Degenerative disc disease – tingling, numbness, radiating pain
- Degenerative spine arthritis – warm throbbing and tenderness, limited range of motion, diminished flexibility?
Degenerative spine symptoms also can vary depending on which region of the spine is affected:
- Degenerative thoracic spine – middle region of back; may feel symptoms around rib cage or lower body
- Degenerative lumbar spine – lower region of back, may feel symptoms in feet, buttocks, legs, and tailbone
- Degenerative cervical spine – upper back and neck, may feel symptoms in neck, shoulders, arms, and hands
If you have talked with your physician about your symptoms and he or she has diagnosed you with a degenerative spine disorder, consider starting a conservative treatment routine such as mild exercise, hot and cold packs, and pain medication. If you’re seeking an alternative treatment option, consider Laser Spine Institute (LSI). Our minimally-invasive, outpatient procedures have helped tens of thousands of people across the country and around the world rediscover a life without pain. Contact us today for a free review of your MRI or CT scan.