Dr. Scott Alderson 92 High St. #4 Hampton, NH 03842 603-929-SCOT (7268)
The Shock Absorber
The spine contains 23 discs which function to provide cushioning for the body.
The discs require motion to get their nutrition, as do all joints of the body. They
do not have a direct blood supply so they absorb their nutrients from the blood supply
of the surrounding bones. Motion is the pumping mechanism. When segments of the
spine do not move correctly or the structure is altered, the discs do not get the
proper nutrition. This inhibits the repair process that is ongoing and the disc
starts to decay or degenerate.
When the disc becomes inflamed it can damage the nerve as seen to the left.
This does not necessarily produce symptoms right away.
The disc has a fibrous outer layer and jelly like center. The fibrous outer
layer acts like a tire and the jelly center provides the cushioning. As the fibers
break down, the jelly gets pushed more and more to the edge. The disc will go from
normal, to bulging, to herniated and eventually will collapse. The pictures below
illustrate this process from left to right. When the disc collpases (degenerative
disc disease) you are left with a bone on bone situation and there is no more capacity
to absorb stress.
The chiropractor applies specific adjustments that help the spine to function
better by improving its structure and mobility. This helps the discs regain their
capacity to self heal. The amount of repair that is capable is usually proportional
to the amount of damage, but age, nutrition and other factors come into play.
Chiropractic is extremely effective in helping these situations and is far more
sensible than drugging away your warning system or surgery.