If you have back pain or problems in your spine, it affects your entire life. It’s hard to do things when they hurt, and when your spine is what hurts, that impacts everything. It limits your mobility and makes every kind of movement painful. When considering treatment options, you may have come across Spinal Decompression Therapy. As with many chiropractic treatments, there are those who wonder if spinal decompression therapy even works. Why not just get spinal decompression surgery, instead?
Here’s what you need to know about spinal decompression therapy and whether or not it is an option for you.
What Is Spinal Decompression Therapy?
Spinal decompression is a process where the spine is stretched. It eases pressure on spinal discs with slow and controlled stretching. It’s a noninvasive treatment method that is meant to help spinal injuries without surgery. It pulls weight off the spine, allows discs to go back in place, and helps to relieve pinched nerves and stimulate blood flow to hurt areas, ergo stimulating the body’s natural healing process. It’s a natural method of treatment, meant to help your body heal itself.
Why Does Your Spine Matter So Much?
Your spine is one of the most important parts of your body. Your central nervous system is in your spine which means that when something is off with your spine, it affects your whole body. A herniated disc can cause leg pain in addition to back pain. Your neck being out of alignment can disrupt the signals your optic nerves send to your brain, ergo impacting your vision. Your spine being hurt means you will find it much harder to move. Your spine matters a lot, which means it’s vital to take care of it.
How Can Spinal Decompression Help?
Spinal problems like herniated discs cause lots of pain, and can lead to restricted movement. Decompressing the spine makes it less likely to degenerate, as we put a lot of pressure on our spine every day. Over time, all that pressure can be quite hard on it, especially if you have a job where you sit all day, as sitting places more pressure on your spine than if you were standing, especially if you have poor posture. Problems with the spine also lead to problems in other areas, like legs, butt, etc, as mentioned above.
Spinal decompression helps by stretching out your spine, relieving pressure and stimulating blood flow.
How Does Spinal Decompression Therapy Work?
Spinal decompression therapy is an outpatient treatment process. Sessions run between half an hour to an hour, and many people report feeling some relief even after their first session. It may be combined with other forms of treatment.
How it works is that you lay on a table of a decompressing machine and are strapped down. The machine’s computer determines what stretching level is best for you and gently pulls your body from a resting position into a stretched-out one. As stretching generally entails, it holds you there for a short period before releasing you, then starting the process again for the duration of the session.
The computer adjusts to you and senses if your muscles are resistant. If they are, it will change the force and cycle of the stretching in order to help relieve the tension in your muscles, as opposed to pulling them and causing more damage. The machine is controlled by a chiropractor, so there is no need to worry about if it might break and not adjust to you.
Spinal decompression can also be done manually. It shouldn’t be a painful treatment. You should just feel a stretch in your spine. There’s no need to take your clothes off at all. It can also be coupled with other treatments, as well as stretches to be done at home.
What Is Spinal Decompression Good For?
The goal of this treatment is to relieve pain and pressure on joints and nerves. It’s good for: sciatica, back and neck pain, stenosis, muscle weakness, bulging or herniated discs, degenerative disc disorders, and more. It helps relieve pain, arthritis, realign spinal discs and joints, and relieves pressure on nerves. It also improves oxygen and blood flow. It’s not meant to merely relieve pain, but also to help fix the problem causing it.
While good for many, spinal decompression therapy is not a good treatment option for all. Some people for whom spinal decompression therapy is not recommended for include: pregnant people, people with broken vertebrae/implants/artificial discs, etc, those with tumors or infection, who are on blood thinners, who had a failed back surgery, and more.
What Affects How Effective It Is?
The efficacy of this treatment depends on the same factors you would consider for any other. Things such as the skill level of your provider and how credible the doctor who diagnosed you is all play factors into whether or not it actually works.
Are You Considering Spinal Decompression Therapy?
Generally, it’s believed that surgery should be a last resort for your problems, so we recommend you to try spinal decompression therapy first.
Here at Elevate Wellness, we offer spinal decompression therapy. We know how important your spine is to your overall health, and want to help you with any problems you may have not merely by treating the pain, but the root of the problem itself. If you would like to schedule an appointment or if you have any questions, please feel free to contact us at Elevate Wellness today!