Non-surgical spinal decompression therapy can be a very effective treatment option to relieve back pain. It’s a simple procedure done over a series of appointments that will stretch your spine to enable the natural space between your vertebrae to be restored.
Very often back pain is a result of compression of the spine. When the spine is compressed it forces the disc out of its natural position. When the disc is displaced, it presses upon the nerves that run through the spinal column. This typically causes a high level of pain.
There are varying levels of disc displacement. A disc may be simply bulging, which means that it is somewhat compressed and slightly protruding from its normal disc space. This can be the result of an injury or the natural aging process. As we age we experience some level of spinal degeneration and disc degeneration.
A herniated disc is somewhat more painful in that it is protruding further and pressing heavily against the nerve root. This is sometimes also called a slipped disc.
Either a bulging or herniated disc may manifest itself as pain in the back, the hip, or both.
Whether you are experiencing pain from a bulging or herniated disc, spinal decompression will help restore the space necessary for the disc to operate normally as the cushion between your vertebrae.
How Does Spinal Decompression Work?
Spinal decompression is a form of traction whereby the patient lays on a two-part decompression table and his legs are strapped to the bottom while his upper body is strapped to the top of the table. The top and bottom of the table move in opposing directions. The doctor will start the first session with a low level of stretch and work to higher levels as the patient progresses over multiple sessions. During the session the table will stretch the patient then relax and continue to repeat this movement for the desired session length, very often twenty minutes. Depending on the severity of the injury, the patient’s legs may be elevated at the knee. When the pain level is very high, the raising of the knees may be delayed until later sessions.
The stretching motion does two things for the patient. One, it opens the space between the vertebrae so that the disc can gently move back into position, removing the disc from the nerve root thus alleviating the pain. Two, the gentle stretching encourages fluid to re-enter the disc thus hydrating and restoring the natural shape to the disc.
This treatment option is highly effective. If you are experiencing back or hip pain, come in for a free consultation and let Dr. Koenig and his team help you find the best way to relieve your pain.