Overview of a slipped disc in the neck

A slipped disc in the neck can be a common source of debilitating symptoms, including neck pain, as well as tingling, numbness and muscle weakness in the extremities.

A slipped disc is a commonly used nonmedical term referring to a spinal disc that has become displaced, such as from conditions like bulging and herniated discs. The resulting displaced disc material can place pressure on adjacent nerves in the spinal column, causing symptoms like pain, numbness, tingling and weakness in the neck, arms, shoulders and hands. Symptoms of a slipped disc in the neck can range from dull to sharp, depending on the severity and location of the disc herniation.

Prevention and treatment for a slipped disc in the neck

There are measures you can take to decrease your chances of developing a slipped disc in the neck. Exercising and maintaining a healthy weight will help your spine stay strong and flexible, and practicing good posture and body mechanics can prevent injury to the spine. Since cigarette smoking can block the flow of oxygen and vital nutrients to spinal discs, work with your doctor to form a plan to quit if this condition is affecting you.

If you have been diagnosed with a cervical slipped disc, the good news is there are several treatment options. Many cases can effectively be treated with conservative options including:

  • Rest
  • Light exercise
  • Over-the-counter or prescription medication
  • Physical therapy
  • Spinal injections

These options are generally aimed at treating symptoms and don’t always lead to lasting relief. Typically, doctors will recommend conservative slipped disc treatments while the condition heals on its own, but sometimes the condition can lead to the development of chronic pain and other symptoms.

When to consider surgery

Surgery can become an option if weeks or months of conservative treatment have not brought the relief required for a good quality of life. For patients considering surgery who have concerns about undergoing a traditional open spine procedure, Laser Spine Institute provides minimally invasive spine surgery. Performed in an outpatient setting using state-of-the art technology, our procedures come with a lower risk of complication and a shorter recovery time^ compared to traditional surgery. To learn more about how Laser Spine Institute’s procedures can help you find relief from neck pain, contact us today.

Our dedicated team will be happy to help you receive a no-cost MRI review* to determine if you may be a candidate for one of our outpatient procedures.