Preventing Degenerative Disc Disease


Bottom Line:

Degenerative disc disease is a condition that can affect your spinal discs as you age. Due to stress and injury throughout your life, your spinal discs may begin to deteriorate and cause pain. Unfortunately, there is no way to prevent degenerative disc disease, but researchers have discovered a few ways that you may be able to slow down the process.

Why it Matters:

The curves of your spine are designed to balance and distribute the load placed on your spinal discs by gravity. Several studies have found that changes to the curves of your spine may result in a higher likelihood of experiencing back pain. We recommend taking proactive steps to maintain a strong and flexible spine-like daily exercise, stretching, and periodic chiropractic adjustments.

Here are three key action steps you can take to slow down degenerative disc disease:

  • Stop Smoking – According to medical researchers, there is an association between smoking and degenerative disc disease. Smoking has been shown to decrease cartilage regeneration by up to 65%. Other studies have shown a decrease in oxygen delivery associated with smoking.
  • Live an Active Lifestyle – To keep your spinal discs healthy, you need to incorporate an active lifestyle. Focus on taking the proactive steps mentioned above: exercise daily, stretch and see your chiropractor.
  • Take an active role in correcting the curves of your spine. This is essential to decrease stress to the joints and discs of the spine.  Just like the tires on your car the more out of line they are the faster they wear.  The greater the flexion of the spine the higher the dependence required to perform normal activities of daily living.
  • Pay Attention to Your Nutrition – You need the right nutrition to maintain the proper function of your discs, bones, and other areas of your body. Your diet should include a good balance of minerals, vitamins, and omega fatty acids. Phase 4 nutrition

Next Steps:

Getting older doesn’t mean that you are destined to suffer from the effects of degenerative disc disease. By taking a proactive approach with your spinal health today, you can give yourself the best opportunity to stay active and pain-free for years to come. To learn more about how to live an active lifestyle, visit our Facebook page today! https://www.facebook.com/mindbodyspinechiro/

Science Source:

  • MRI Changes in Lumbar Degenerative Disc Disease. EJOST. 2016.
  • Effects of Tobacco Smoking on the Degeneration of the Intervertebral Disc: A Finite Element Study.  PLoS One v.10(8);2015

CLICK HERE for the 4 phases of care protocol 

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