Common herniated disc causes — unhealthy weight

Patients diagnosed with a herniated disc may be recommended to change some lifestyle habits, such as diet and exercise, to help reduce the pain caused by a herniated disc. Prior to making those lifestyle changes, it is important to understand the connection between your weight and a herniated disc in the spine through the information provided in the following article.

How does a herniated disc develop?

Excessive weight is one of the most common causes of a herniated disc. The spine is responsible for supporting and stabilizing most of the body’s weight. However, extra weight creates added pressure, causing the vertebrae of the spine to compress. As the vertebrae compress, they squeeze the disc found in between each set of vertebrae. If a disc is squeezed hard enough, the inner gel-like center of the disc will break out and leak into the spinal canal, thereby resulting in a herniated disc.

Avoiding a herniated disc through conservative therapy

Usually, when a physician warns about obesity, the focus is placed on pressing health issues that can be associated with maintaining an unhealthy weight, such as heart disease, respiratory problems, diabetes and other similar issues. Yet, the strain placed on the spine by carrying around excess body fat is also a significant consideration.

If you are overweight and you are experiencing pain in your lower back, you could be in the beginning stages of a herniated disc or other spine conditions related to weight gain. The lumbar spine (lower back) is the biggest support of the body’s weight, so any indication of a beginning spine condition due to obesity will likely be noticed in the lower back.

Consult your physician if you begin to experience chronic back pain. He or she may recommend conservative methods of treatment such as physical therapy, low-impact exercise and dietary changes to begin treating your condition if it is still in the beginning states. Living a healthy and active lifestyle will help to strengthen your core muscles, which can help relieve some of the pressure off your spine.

When herniated disc surgery becomes necessary

In the event that several weeks or months of surgical treatments do not provide you with adequate relief from your symptoms, then contact the spine care experts at Laser Spine Institute. We offer a safer and effective alternative to traditional open spine surgery^ in the form of our minimally invasive herniated disc procedures.

Since 2005, our dedicated team has helped more than 75,000 patients find lasting relief from their chronic neck or back pain, setting us apart as the leader in minimally invasive spine surgery. To find out if you are a potential candidate for our herniated disc procedures, reach out to us today and ask for a free MRI review.* We are here to help guide you through your journey to wellness.

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