Bulging Discs: What are they?

By: Dr. Ellis Schauder|March 1, 2021

In between the vertebrae of your spine are gelatinous discs. These spinal discs act as shock absorbers, preventing the bone vertebrae from colliding and grinding into each other. Over time, or due to injury, these discs begin to deteriorate and bulge out. These bulging discs can be benign in most cases, but when the bulging disc presses against nerve or tissue, it can result in uncomfortable and persistent pain. But what are spinal discs? And what causes them to bulge?

What are Spinal Discs?

Spinal discs, also known as Intervertebral discs, are disc shape cushions located between the vertebrae. In between each pair of vertebrae is an intervertebral disc. The outer ring, called the annulus, is the strong, fibrous area that keeps the soft center whole. The annulus is also what binds the vertebra together. The center of an intervertebral disc is the soft nucleus, which has moist tissue that gives it its shock absorbing properties.

The intervertebral discs are undoubtedly tough, and they can take a lot of stress—they do begin to deteriorate, and that’s where the issues arise.

What’s a Bulging Disc?

A bulging disc is the result of a deteriorating inner nucleus of a spinal disc. The deteriorating nucleus presses against the outer ring of the disc, pushing it past the vertebrae. Once the outer disc extends past the vertebrae, it can push against a nerve or outer tissue, resulting in pain. The bulging disc can rupture, developing into a far more debilitating and painful herniated disc.

Due to the vicinity of a bulging disc to nerves, there are many symptoms that can result of a bulging disc.

Bulging Disc Symptoms

You have over 100 billion nerve cells in your body, and many of them emerge from the central nervous system, which extends from the brain and down the spine. With the peripheral nervous system being so vast and numerous, a bulging disc that pinches a nerve might result in a vast array of symptoms. Here are some of the most common symptoms:

  • Back pain
  • Muscle Spasms (usually back muscles)
  • Numbness in legs and feet
  • Reduced mobility
  • Loss of bladder and bowel control
  • Reduced coordination
  • Sciatica

These symptoms can range from purely being a discomfort to truly being debilitating. More symptoms can emerge if the disc is further damaged. There are ways to treat a bulging disc, and one of them is through chiropractic treatment.

Chiropractic Treatment of Bulging Discs

Chiropractic treatment specializes in spinal adjustment, which is a gentle way to treat a bulging disc. With a customized treatment plan and several sessions, the bulging disc will improve.

Schauder Chiropractic & Wellness Center

At Schauder Chiropractic & Wellness Center, we focus on the goal of healing every patient with care and proven methods–this includes helping those with anxiety. We believe going to a chiropractor for anxiety can be a welcomed addition to your mental health care regiment. Your physical and mental functions work in tandem, and by treating them both, you can start to feel better.

We offer a wide variety of other chiropractic and wellness services including:

Schedule your appointment today at our Orlando chiropractor office at 407-275-6700.

About The Author: Dr. Ellis Schauder

Dr. Schauder graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Biology from the State University of New York at Stony Brook. Consequently, he graduated with a Doctor of Chiropractic (D.C.) degree from New York Chiropractic College. He completed post-graduate studies in the areas of radiology, impairment rating and chiropractic orthopedics. Dr. Schauder is licensed in the states of Florida and New York.