Spinal Disc Herniation
That’s the full name for a “herniated disc,” which refers to when one of the soft cushions – or “discs” – that separate the sections of your spine suddenly tears or slips out of position. As 3 million North Americans discover each year, having a slipped disc can be EXTREMELY painful. First, because it means the bones along your spine may be grinding together. Plus, when a disc pushes up against a nerve, it can trigger everything from shooting pain along your back, to numbness and weakness that extends all the way to your arms and legs!
Research shows that most herniated discs are simply the result of aging. As we get older, our discs tend to dry out and become less flexible – which makes them more prone to tearing or sliding out of place. And that’s more likely to happen in MEN, by the way, since they don’t need extra room in their body to carry a baby… so, their spines are straighter – and even LESS flexible – than a woman’s.
The good news is that many slipped disc issues repair themselves with rest and gentle stretching. But talk to your doctor if you experience pain or numbness that lasts more than a week, since that could mean you need surgery!