What is Spinal Spondylosis?
The term “spondylosis” by itself may sound like something you might find in the ocean or a botanical garden. When we add the word spine to it, “spinal spondylosis,” the brain may go to all sorts of places it shouldn’t. We understand that many of the terms used to describe spinal conditions and treatments can seem intimidating. Here, we break down what spinal spondylosis really means and what it means for your quality of life.
If Dr. Albert tells you that you have spinal spondylosis, what he is saying is that your spine has changed in some way. Doctors may also be more specific and diagnose spinal pain as spinal arthritis or osteoarthritis of the spine. They’re all essentially the same but described differently. Usually, spinal spondylosis describes a general wearing down of the spinal structure.
Spinal Spondylosis Symptoms
- Degenerative disc disease, in which the gel-like discs between the bones of the spine grow thin and weak.
- Breakdown of the facet joints that reside at the outer sides of vertebrae to give the spine flexibility and movement.
- Spinal stenosis, which is the narrowing of the spinal canal.
- Bone spurs, which are tiny growths that interfere with muscles or nerves leaving the spinal column.
- Chronic back pain of any kind may be described as spondylosis.
Spinal Spondylosis Treatment
You may be happy to hear that surgery is the last option that doctors consider to correct spinal spondylosis. First lines of defense are entirely in your hands. If you’re struggling with chronic back pain, don’t avoid seeing your doctor. It is necessary to determine why you are experiencing pain so appropriate treatment can be planned. Common strategies include:
- Prioritizing your mental health. We wouldn’t dare say that back pain is “all in your head.” What studies have shown is that a person’s mental state is involved in the degree of physical pain he feels. People who are frequently stressed, anxious, or depressed are more likely to then experience physical pain. Research suggests that the “feel good” hormones that are secreted when we feel happy also have pain-fighting power.
- Now, when we’re dealing with chronic back pain, physical activity may need to be target-oriented. Working with a physical therapist may be a better idea than working with a personal trainer if the goal is to reduce pain and build core strength to support the spine.
- A little TLC never hurt anyone. Chronic back pain places the entire body into a physically stressed state. Complementary treatments like massage and acupuncture can restore stasis, so muscle tension does not exacerbate pain.