Degenerative disc disease is commonly known as DDD and it’s an affliction that can affect your spine as you age or through injury. If suffering from DDD pain and inflammation it can often be treated by strengthening your core muscles, neck and back through physiotherapy. The goal is to strengthen your body, particularly the spine, through active and passive treatments. Passive treatments are used to help relax your body and most people then typically begin active treatments to help relieve their pain.
Treating Degenerative Disc Disease
Common treatments for DDD include deep tissue massage, hot and cold therapy and traction. Massages help target muscle tension, spasms, sprains and strains. Direct pressure and friction is applied to your soft tissues such as muscles, ligaments and tendons. The heat will increase the blood flow of the affected area which results in the delivery of nutrients and oxygen. The increased circulation also helps remove any waste by-products which have been produced by muscle spasms.
When it comes to cold therapy, the blood circulation is slowed down and this helps reduce pain, spasms and swelling. The most common forms of cold therapy are ice packs. After going through cold therapy it’s common to stretch the muscles. As for spinal traction, the aim is to alleviate the muscle and nerve pain and tightness by stretching your back. This is performed manually or with the help of a specially designed traction machine.
Active therapy is also important since you need to improve your core stability, range of motion, strength and flexibility through stretching and physical exercises. At Fit Physiotherapy we conduct a thorough examination through testing and personalize each DDD therapy program for the individual’s specific needs. We will discuss your health history and make sure the program is suitable for your condition. In reality, DDD can’t be eradicated since the discs have already begun to degenerate and this can’t be reversed. Your dedicated therapist will help eliminate the pain and show you how to manage it.
You will learn what triggers the pain and how to avoid it through things such as proper posture, body mechanics and other healthy habits. You will also be able to work on your personalized program at home by strengthening the back and abdominal muscles while also increasing your muscle endurance. Exercises may also help you reduce weight at the same time and reduce the pain and stress on your discs. Other contributors to DDD pain can include smoking, lack of exercise and physical work.
If the degenerative disc is in your neck it can lead to neck, shoulder and/or arm pain while an affected disc in the lower back often leads to pain in the legs, back and/or buttocks. This pain can often be felt when reaching, bending and sitting and it may lead to tingling and numbness in the affected areas. Once you begin your treatments you should notice a reduction in pain while your body begins to strengthen. Our goal is to improve your movement and flexibility, so you return to and/or enjoy your daily activities as soon as possible.
When not properly treated, DDD will often lead to a recurrence of pain. Regular treatments and exercises are recommended to help keep the discomfort at bay. At Fit Physiotherapy all of our therapists are experienced and educated in treating DDD and possess advanced knowledge and skills at helping relieve the pain. FIT Physiotherapy is located in Newmarket, Ontario, contact us today to learn more about how we can help treat your DDD.