Spinal stenosis is a common condition that is often ignored until the later stages. A person who suffers from this condition is typically in pain due to a narrow spinal canal that places pressure on nerves from the spinal cord. Unfortunately, many people still choose to ignore the early symptoms and will opt for surgery as a last resort. There are many treatment options available for spinal stenosis, although many, such as surgery, are very invasive. If you’ve been diagnosed with spinal stenosis, you may be searching for a natural approach to treatment. Chiropractic care can help effectively and safely treat a wide range of conditions and offers many health benefits, but can chiropractic help spinal stenosis?
Can Chiropractic Help Spinal Stenosis?
Chiropractic care is one of the best treatment options for this disease. Cervical or lumbar spinal stenosis treatment administered by a licensed chiropractor can provide immediate pain relief while eliminating the need for harmful medications and invasive surgery. Treatment is effective, safe, and gentle.
What is Spinal Stenosis?
Spinal stenosis is a condition in which the space between the spinal column narrows down. This condition often occurs in the neck and lower back and is typically caused by the wear and tear of old age. In some cases, this condition can be combined with osteoarthritis. Due to the narrow spinal canal, the nerves are compressed, resulting in severe chronic pain.
Causes of Spinal Stenosis
This narrowing of the spine can also irritate the nerve roots or the spinal cord itself. As the condition progresses, the spinal cord and nerves are squeezed or compressed. The aging process is the most common cause of spinal stenosis and it’s typically found in patients who are over the age of fifty.
As we age, our spinal cord can develop arthritis, an intervertebral disc can herniate or bulge, or the ligaments that connect the vertebra can buckle. These degenerative changes can result in spinal stenosis. This condition can occur at any level of the spine; however, cervical and lumbar areas of the spine are the most commonly affected.
Other factors that can cause spinal stenosis include:
- Sedentary lifestyle
- Disc herniation
- Thickening of tissue, such as cartilage or ligaments, in the canal
- Excessive bone growth
- Degeneration of tissues
In many cases, spinal stenosis is aggravated or caused by a misalignment in the neck or spine. With chiropractic treatment, manipulations and adjustments can correct these issues and relieve stress that has been placed on the nerves in the spinal column.
The initial symptoms of this condition are considered minor until the later stages when a person begins to experience chronic severe pain symptoms. In some cases, spinal stenosis may be discovered accidentally during a CT scan or MRI.
Other common symptoms of spinal stenosis include:
- General lower back pain
- Extreme lower back pain or upper body pain
- Leg pain
- Cramping in one or both legs when standing for long periods of time
- Difficulty walking on flat terrain, up hills, or climbing stairs
- Neck pain
- Hands, arms, legs, and feet may feel numb or have a tingling sensation.
- Urinary urgency in severe cases
Stress on the spinal nerves will not only result in pain, but it can be the source of other health problems, such as loss of bladder control, headaches, walking problems, and balance issues.
Chiropractic Care for Spinal Stenosis
With this condition, the cervical spine or the lower lumbar are affected. Lumbar stenosis and cervical spine stenosis are both painful conditions that can benefit from chiropractic therapy.
The main concentration of chiropractic care is the spinal cord, which is why chiropractic treatment is so effective in treating spinal stenosis. By using a hands-on approach and focusing on the musculoskeletal structure of the spine, the body becomes capable of healing itself, without the need for painful surgery or harmful medication.
When a patient decides to seek chiropractic treatment, a licensed chiropractor will use spinal manipulation to treat the condition. Gentle hand movements are used to subtly change the position of the vertebrae. This procedure will relieve the accumulated pressure that has been placed on the spine, providing relief to the patient. Unlike harmful medications that will simply mask the pain, spinal adjustments are designed to correct the problematic area.
Spinal Stenosis Chiropractic Treatments
Treatment for spinal stenosis involves a variety of techniques aside from spinal manipulation, that can help relieve pain.
Treatment for lumbar spinal stenosis involves regular manual therapy sessions as it tends to improve blood circulation, which can aid in the body’s healing process.
Physical Therapy and Massage Therapy
A core part of spinal stenosis treatment is physical therapy combined with chiropractic treatment. Treatment will involve a variety of stretches that help reinforce the spinal manipulation technique. These special exercises can be performed at home. Patients may also benefit from regular massage therapy sessions in addition to chiropractic treatment and physical therapy.
Dieting and Lifestyle Changes
Lumbar or cervical spinal stenosis chiropractic treatment isn’t complete without providing a patient with a healthy lifestyle and dietary advice. Implementing these small lifestyle changes can go a long way toward the healing process.
Benefits of Chiropractic Care
Before you consider a painful surgery, consider the following benefits of a spinal stenosis chiropractic treatment.
Natural Pain Relief
Chiropractic treatment takes a natural approach to treating painful symptoms, without the use of addictive medication or painful surgeries.
Zero Recovery Time
Chiropractic manipulation is a gentle, simple treatment process that does not require any recovery time.
Poor posture will not only bring about spinal stenosis, but it can also make the condition incredibly painful. A chiropractor can provide patients advice concerning exercise and other tips they can follow that will help improve overall posture and will address muscle weakness.
Activity is Encouraged
Many doctors will advise a patient to avoid any type of activity that will make the pain worse, such as riding a bicycle or walking uphill. However, chiropractor care will encourage a patient to be as active as possible because inactivity will only result in further deterioration of the muscles that support the spine.
Can Chiropractic Treatment Make Spinal Stenosis Pain Worse?
There’s nothing a chiropractor will do that will exacerbate or irritate spinal stenosis. A person with this condition knows that bending forward can provide instant pain relief. This is because, in that position, the spine is lengthened, offering a small amount of extra space. This extra space is often just enough to relieve the pressure on the spinal nerves. A chiropractic adjustment can also provide this type of release, by using an extension technique, stretches, and spinal adjustments.
As with other types of manipulation and most exercises, it can take several visits with a chiropractor to reach the maximum level of comfort. With improved posture, proper exercise to strengthen muscles, stretching, and spinal adjustments, chiropractic treatment is not only safe for people with spinal stenosis, but it’s also very effective.
How Long Before I Feel Relief from Pain?
Many patients feel as much as a fifty percent reduction in their pain level after their first visit and will continue to experience the benefits of treatment beyond that.
Everyone is different and responds to treatment differently. Pain relief can depend on the severity of the spinal stenosis, the age of the patient, their overall health, and their activity level.
Schedule an Appointment Today
At Deep Roots Chiropractic Health Center, we provide chiropractic care that is all-natural, non-invasive, and designed to improve spinal health. If you’re suffering from spinal stenosis, contact our facility today to schedule an appointment with one of our professional chiropractors. If you’re looking for safe alternatives to surgery and addictive pain medication, our medical professionals can help.
Spinal stenosis will only worsen over time. Our licensed chiropractors take a comprehensive treatment approach to pain relief with the goal of helping to improve your quality of life and relieve your pain. Contact our facility today and let us help set you on the path to total wellness.