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Slipped Disc Treatment


Chiropractors provide slipped disc treatment to patients suffering from pain due to a slipped, or bulging, disc. Chiropractors offer a drug-free, holistic approach to relieving the pain and encouraging the slipped disc to resorb and return to its proper position.

What is a slipped disc?

A slipped disc, also known as a herniated or bulging disc, occurs when a spinal disc becomes damaged.

Spinal discs are circular cushions positioned between each vertebra, the bones that make up the spine, to absorb and distribute the shock your spine experiences from regular movement, such as walking, running, jumping, lifting, bending, and twisting. The outer layer of the spinal disc is fibrous and hard. This outer layer houses and protects the disc’s inner gelatinous layer.

When the outer layer tears, due to injury or aging, the inner gelatinous layer pushes out, causing the disc to bulge out from between the vertebrae. Despite the name, spinal discs do not actually slip. Instead, they bulge and move from their proper position, often putting pressure on, or pinching, spinal nerve roots.

Why should I choose a chiropractor for slipped disc treatment?

Chiropractors think of the body as a collection of nerve pathways that lead to and from the spine. They think of the spine as the neurological super highway, which transmits all the motor, sensory and autonomic functions to and from the brain. Doctors of chiropractic believe that the vertebrae must be in perfect alignment in order to protect the nerve roots and enjoy optimal nerve function, which results in overall health.

Chiropractors carefully evaluate the patient’s spine to determine the true cause of the patient’s pain and provide slipped disc treatment that is gentle and drug-free.


Before performing slipped disc treatment, your chiropractor will perform a careful, concise evaluation to determine the true cause of your pain. Like other health care providers, chiropractors carefully analyze their patient’s medical history and perform a thorough physical exam. Chiropractors will also conduct orthopedic and neurological testing to determine if you have slipped discs.

The orthopedic and neurological exams will also determine if your reflexes are intact, if you have experienced any loss of muscle strength or show signs of muscle wasting, or if there is any loss of sensation near a particular nerve, for example. X-rays may also be necessary to help the chiropractor determine if your spine has any slipped discs.

Slipped Disc Treatment

Some patients may heal on their own without slipped disc treatment. However, if you experience pain that is interfering with your regular activities for more than a week, seek chiropractic treatment right away.

Chiropractors will not pop a disc back into place or use a few quick treatments to fix herniated discs. Instead, chiropractic treatment involves a program of low-force techniques and constant evaluation to determine the patient’s progress.

A common treatment for disc conditions is called flexion-distraction, a technique that has become widely used to treat symptomatic disc injuries, such as disc herniation, that involve back and leg pain. Patients are placed on a computerized table, designed to gently twist and pull the patient’s spine to target the affected area and guide the disc back into place. By distracting or stretching the spine in a gentle pumping rhythm, the chiropractor can isolate the area of the spine and encourage the misplaced disc to assume its proper position in a pain-free manner. Over the time, the herniated disc will move away from the nerve, which will result in reduced inflammation of the nerve root and eventually the associated back and leg pain will diminish.

Spinal distraction is applied in a series of treatments combined with at-home exercises, supplementation, and changes in nutrition and diet. Most chiropractors will evaluate patients and question them throughout treatment to determine if they are responding positively to distraction. If a patient does not show improvement halfway through the treatment, the chiropractor will assign an imaging study and refer the patient to a spine specialist, when necessary.

If you are experiencing any of the symptoms of disc herniation, consult with a chiropractor to determine if your pain is the result of herniated discs and if you would be a good candidate for slipped disc treatment.

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