Three of the most common approaches that are used to treat spine injury and pain are spinal decompression, chiropractic adjustments, and surgery. A quick assessment reveals which of these approaches are the safest and most effective paths to take.
3 Approaches to Relief
1. Spinal decompression
Nonsurgical spinal decompression therapy is a means to generate negative pressure within the spinal discs (called intradiscal pressure) through a controlled stretching and loosening process. Two of the key benefits of this healthcare modality are:
- Moving the bulging or herniated disc’s nucleus (inner portion) back to its correct position
- Creating a more optimal environment for recovery and allowing nutrients to more easily access the area.
Chiropractors treat 22 million patients per year in the United States. Just over one-third of them, 35%, are visiting the chiro doctor for treatment of their backs and spine.
The philosophy behind chiropractic care is that the body can naturally return to health (with no need for drugs or surgery) by bringing the musculoskeletal system into proper alignment. To achieve that better positioning of the body’s structures, the doctor uses manual adjustment and other treatments. By adjusting the spine, the chiro professional is able to help the body heal from damage to tissue caused by situations ranging from a spine injury to prolonged sitting at a desk with insufficient support for the back.
Surgery on the spine can lead to incredible complications, and it is often ineffective. Prominent sports examples of unhelpful surgeries are Steve Kerr and Tiger Woods.
Many spinal surgeries have been recommended that were not backed by sound science. New York Times science reporter Gina Kolata notes that spinal fusion surgery had logged four clinical trials by the early 2000s. The findings show that the operation was “no better than… supervised exercise and therapy,” writes Kolata. Despite this ineffectiveness, spinal fusion surgery numbers rose through 2012, when the insurers stopped paying for it.
Similarly, various clinical trials were analyzed within a 2009 review published in the New England Journal of Medicine on another approach, vertebroplasty. Again, the researchers found there was no scientifically verified benefit of the surgery. Nonetheless, vertebroplasty and a similar operation, kyphoplasty, are still used today.
Do you need help recovering from a spine injury? Surgery may be dangerous and ineffective, but chiro and spinal decompression offer safe and powerful options.
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