Narrowing of the spinal canal or most commonly called spinal stenosis, is a condition that squeezes spinal nerves. Chiropractic care is an all-natural and non-invasive treatment that can help relieve painful symptoms as well as addressing the condition from the source. If you have spinal stenosis at the thoracic, lumbar or cervical spine, it’s definitely recommended to try chiropractic care.
What Is Spinal Stenosis?
Spinal stenosis is caused by the spinal canal narrowing. This condition comes from the greek word stenosis, which means “choking”. Spinal stenosis is very common in people older than 50 years old. This is because at that age spinal discs and vertebrae start naturally wearing and tearing, resulting in gradual degeneration of spinal discs.
The spinal cord is located in the spinal canal, which is the key component of the central nervous system and of soft tissue like veins, ligaments and the membrane that protects the spinal cord (dura). The canal’s average size is 14mm wide, 10mm of which are inhabited by the spinal cord and soft tissue. That leaves little room for anything else.
As people age the spine’s vertebrae can start developing arthritis, bulging discs, and buckling of ligaments. All of these can cause spinal stenosis, causing the space in the spinal canal to get narrower. Spinal stenosis can take place at the three levels of the psinal, but its more common in the lumbar region and cervical spine.
Symptoms of Spinal Stenosis
When there is narrowing of the spinal canal, it chokes or pinches the spinal cord. When this takes place, it can lead to radiating pain, weakness and numbness in different parts of the spine. The spinal stenosis symptoms vary depending on where the stenosis is located.
The most common symptoms of spinal stenosis includes the following:
- Neck pain
- Numbness or tingling in the arm, hand, leg, or foot
- Weakness in the arm, hand, leg, or foot
- Problems with walking and balance
- Urinary urgency and incontinence
The rarest stenosis is the one located in the thoracic spine given its not as mobile as the neck and the back. However, these vertebrae are joined to the ribs and they move when you rotate side to side.
Symptoms of Thoracic Spinal Stenosis
- Pain in the ribs
- A localized pain in the affected area
- Pain radiating down the back or legs
- Aching in the legs that leads to difficulty walking
- Pain in one or more internal organs
Finally, the most common form of stenosis is lumbar spinal stenosis. This is because the lumbar spine is the one that carries the upper body’s weight and anything else you’re carrying. The lower back bends and twists more than the upper back, which makes it more susceptible to injuries.
Symptoms of Lumbar Spinal Stenosis
- Numbness or tingling in the legs or feet
- Weakness in the legs or feet
- Pain in one or both legs after standing for long periods of time
- Pain that usually eases when you bend forward or sit
- Back pain
Can Chiropractic Treatment Help?
Chiropractic treatment for stenosis has a holistic approach. This means the chiropractor will assess your symptoms, your spine’s state, how your body is feeling and what makes your symptoms worse or better. First, the chiropractor will request an x-ray or MRI to detect where the spinal stenosis is.
After knowing exactly where your pain is, the chiropractor will then treat that nerve compression caused by stenosis. The different kinds of treatment are:
- Spinal adjustments
- Ultrasound therapy
- Electric stimulation (E-stim)
- Massage therapy
- Stretches and exercise
- Lifestyle advice
The aim of chiropractic therapy is to widen the space in the spinal canal, where the spinal cord is. By relieving tension in your muscles and removing pressure from your spinal nerves a chiropractor can lessen your symptoms.
A chiropractor’s care is way less invasive than any other treatment option like open spine surgery or injections. And, it doesn’t employ harmful medications.
Chiropractor Near You
If you have symptoms of spinal stenosis we can help you relieve your pain. Come to one of our Mauricio Chiropractic‘s 9 locations in the Orlando area and see a chiropractor as soon as possible. Schedule an appointment here.
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