The spine acts like a load bearing wall in a home, designed to support and distribute the weight of what it holds. It also has the force of gravity bearing down on it, too – year after year. If we couple that with our constant motion, performing our daily routines and exercises, it’s no wonder that our spine can eventually weaken and cause problems for us.
The spine is made up of vertebral discs that act as shock absorbers. These discs are made up of two parts, a hard outer surface and a softer inner portion, which tends to resemble a jelly donut of all things. At birth, 80% of the disc is composed of water. This hydration ensures that the spinal discs can function as they should. However, we all know that life happens, and despite our best efforts staying well hydrated and accident-free isn’t always reality. Over time, as the discs lose water they become stiffer, which is a catalyst for disc degeneration. Disc degeneration limits the spines ability to adjust to compression from the weight it carries, affecting movement of our body. In time, this can cause the spine to compress and squeeze the discs closer together, increasing the incidence of pain from either a bulging disc or a pinched nerve.
An effective, non-invasive way to treat this condition is through decompression. Spinal Decompression Therapy is a treatment that relieves the pressure on the nerves that are being pinched, or compressed, and causing pain. The treatment involves a person laying on a traction table and stretching the spine. This stretching, which alleviates the pain because the pressure is removed, allows the disc to begin the process of rehydrating and healing. To be truly effective, an individual will have the therapy three times per week over the course of two to four weeks, with each session lasting approximately fifteen minutes.
It’s remarkable what the body can do if given the resources it needs to function as it should.