Physical Therapy For Degenerative Disc Disease (DDD)
Degenerative disc disease (DDD) is one of the most misunderstood. This condition is a weakening of one or more vertebral discs, which normally act as a cushion between the vertebrae. Degenerative disc disease is one of the most common causes of neck pain and lower back pain.
This disease is usually associated with aging because it can develop as a natural part of the aging process. However, it may also result from back injury.
At Advanced Health Solutions Georgia Spine & Disc, Dr. Kal, our Woodstock chiropractor, will recommend physical therapy to assist in treating Degenerative Disc Disease. You may have to work on strengthening your core muscles, neck, and back since degenerative disc disease can weaken your spine significantly. Therefore, it’ll help to support your spine better, which may result in reduced pain.
Physical therapy includes active and passive treatments. Passive treatments assist in relaxing you and your body. They are called passive because you do not have to participate actively. You will most likely begin with the passive treatments as your body adjusts to the pain and/or heals if you are experiencing acute pain. However, the objective of physical therapy is to get into active treatments. These therapeutic exercises strengthen your body so that your spine has enhanced support.
Passive Physical Therapy Treatments for Degenerative Disc Disease
When you visit Advanced Health Solutions Medical Center, our Woodstock physical therapist can give you one of the following passive treatments:
Cold and Hot Therapies: Your physical therapist in Woodstock, Georgia will alternate between cold and hot therapies. The body requires blood to get rid of waste byproducts that muscle spasms create, and it helps in healing as well. By using heat, our Woodstock physical therapist seeks to boost blood supply to the target part of the body since an increased blood flow brings more nutrients and oxygen to that area.
Cold therapy: Also known as cryotherapy, slows circulation; thus, helping to reduce pain, muscle spasms, and inflammation. Another critical cryotherapy option is a spray referred to as fluoromethane, which cools the tissues. You may have a cold pack placed on the target area, or even get an ice massage. After cold therapy, our therapist may work with you to stretch the affected muscles.
Deep tissue massage: In this technique, the therapist uses friction and direct pressure to try to release tension in your soft tissues (muscles, tendons, ligaments). You could have muscle tension or spasms due to sprains or strains. Therefore, this technique targets chronic muscle tension and spasms, which perhaps builds up through everyday life stress.
Spinal traction: By stretching your back, spinal traction works to relieve pain that compressed nerves or muscle tightness causes. Advanced Health Solutions Medical Center’s therapist can do that mechanically (with special machines) or manually (by using his or her own body).
Your therapist may try traction, especially if the foramen -the area where the nerve exits the spinal canal -pinches your nerve. It is thought to stretch the spine to readjust the vertebrae; thus, widening the foramen.
Active Physical Therapy Treatments For DDD
Active physical therapy involves learning different exercises to boost your strength, flexibility, the range of motion (how easily your joints move), and core stability. At Advanced Health Solutions Medical Center, Dr. Kal, our Woodstock chiropractor will recommend a personalized physical therapy program for you, taking into account your history and health.
The goals may include increasing muscle endurance (so that your stronger muscles can work harder longer), getting your body to carry your weight more efficiently, and strengthening back and abdominal muscles. Your exercises may not suit another person with DDD.
Degenerative disc disease will not ever “go away” entirely —once your discs start to degenerate, you cannot reverse that process. Our physical therapist will assist you to learn how to limit the pain and how to work around it. You will learn about your body mechanics to help you to avoid positions that cause pain.
If you’re suffering from Degenerative Disc Disease, look no further than Advanced Health Solutions Medical Center. Call us today at (770-926-9495) to book your appointment. Dr. Kal is ready to help you restore your health and put a smile on your face again!