As a moving worker, 35-year-old David often has to move and carry all kinds of furniture and sundries on his shoulders, causing his back pain to become more serious. However, he couldn’t bear the severe pain and finally went to the hospital for treatment, only to find out that he had a herniated disc.
In fact, not only manual laborers, but also office workers who sit in office chairs for a long time may suffer from herniated discs. How to prevent herniated discs and avoid back pain?
We will take you through the structure of the intervertebral disc to understand the symptoms and causes of intervertebral disc herniation step by step, so as to avoid it in daily life.
The intervertebral disc is the cartilage between the vertebrae
The intervertebral disc is closely related to the central nervous system of the human body. The central nervous system includes the spinal cord and brain. The spinal cord extends from the brain and is protected by a series of vertebrae, and the cushioning cartilage in the space between each vertebrae is the intervertebral disc.
When the intervertebral disc is affected by external force, resulting in deformation, protrusion, or rupture, it will cause intervertebral disc herniation. Generally speaking, most of the intervertebral disc herniation occurs in the 4th and 5th lumbar vertebrae, or between the 5th lumbar vertebrae and the 1st recommended vertebrae. Since the intervertebral disc is dependent on the central nervous system and the spine, if it is displaced, it will cause nerve compression, numbness, pain and other symptoms in the limbs.
What are the symptoms of disc herniation?
In addition to the typical symptoms of low back pain, patients with herniated discs may also experience the following symptoms:
- Lower back pain
- Leaning towards the unaffected side
- Pelvic tilt when standing
- Weakened knee reflex
- Symptoms may be exacerbated by sneezing, coughing, or bending over and relieved by lying down
- Twitching pain in the calf or back of the thigh
- Numbness and weakness in the legs
When should I seek medical attention?
If you meet any of the above symptoms of suspected intervertebral disc herniation, or have long-term low back pain or frequent sprain to the waist and other problems, you should seek medical attention as soon as possible to prevent symptoms from worsening.
Depending on the severity, the doctor will advise the patient to rest, or to improve through traction surgery, oral medication, and rehabilitation. If the situation is too serious, the doctor may perform surgery after assessment.
Causes of disc herniation are sedentary, and heavy lifting
There are many causes of intervertebral disc herniation. Epidemiological studies have shown that it is a multifactorial disease. A work style that often lifts heavy objects and bends over. Occupations that have long been in the working environment of vertical vibration of the whole body. Occupations, such as drivers of large trucks, container trucks, trains and other heavy machinery, belong to the high-risk group of intervertebral disc herniation.
Although the nature of work is the main cause of herniated discs, factors such as genetics, age, ischemia, and smoking have also been identified as potentially affecting the risk of herniated discs.
Two Keys to Prevent Back Pain and Herniated Disc
If you want to prevent intervertebral disc herniation, you must try to avoid stress on the lumbar spine, such as: maintain a chest-high standing posture, reduce weight, and do not let the chair hang in the air, etc. The following two tips for protecting the intervertebral disc are provided for sedentary people and laborers:
- Correct sitting posture and long-term sitting:
If you have to sit for a long time due to the nature of your work, try to get up and walk around every hour to reduce the pressure on your waist. When sitting on a chair, you should keep your feet on the ground, your hands perpendicular to the table at 90 degrees, and your upper body straight without a hunchback. Do not lean on the back of the chair or armrest due to fatigue, so as not to aggravate the disc herniation and spinal cord injury.
- Practice lifting heavy objects and bending over in a safe posture
- Correct sitting posture and long-term sitting:
For example, when lifting heavy objects or picking up objects, squat down instead of bending down. If you have to bend down, keep your spine neutral and avoid bending. The above postures can be trained through squats, deadlifts, etc. On the one hand, you can learn the movement mode, and at the same time, you can strengthen the core stability, lower back, and waist muscles, reducing the risk of injury and intervertebral disc herniation.
Three simple actions teach you to reduce back pain due to heriated disc
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