Finding the Correct Chiropractic Treatment for Back Pain

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Finding the correct chiropractic treatment for back pain and slipped discs

What is a Slipped Disc?


Slipped Discs are more properly called Prolapsed or bulging discs.  People commonly refer to them as slipped discs or pinched or trapped nerves but basically they are all related to a problem with the discs.


The discs are the shock absorbers between the bones (vertebrae) in your spine.  They consist of a tough, fibrous outer coat and a softer gel-like substance in the middle. What happens is that the outer fibres tear and allow the inner gel to protrude.  They are popularly called ‘Slipped Discs’ although they do not really slip.

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Why is it so painful?

If you are unlucky the protruding disc material will touch one of the nerves coming out from the spinal cord, sending pain down the leg or arms.  It is not the physical pressure on the nerve which causes most of the pain but the body’s reaction, that is both inflammation and also your own immune system attacking the disc material because it is unfamiliar.


What causes it?

Either a severe trauma, for example a car accident or a twisting while lifting injury.  However, many patients will visit the clinic saying, “All I did was bend down to tie my shoe laces and this happened.”  The truth is that back injuries do not occur through such simple activities.  It is often a build up of small traumas usually caused by our lifestyle and poor postures and working postures that causes the problem.  Bending over to tie your laces was just the ‘straw that broke the camels back’, so to speak.  This is why prevention is so important for our long term health.

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How do you know if you have a prolapsed or bulging disc?


You may experience very severe unrelenting pain in the back and down the leg. This can be dramatically worse with coughing or sneezing.  Another sign is the inability to raise a straight leg when lying flat on one’s back.


Is there any treatment?



An extremely effective form of treatment for back pain and slipped discs.  Chiropractors are trained to read and take X-rays which are often very useful in the diagnosis process and help the patient to understand the problem.  The Doctor of Chiropractic will consult with you and give you a thorough examination.  They may also take X-rays if it is deemed necessary.  Once the Doctor has studied your case they will report back to you giving you an understanding of what has happened and what can be done to restore you back to proper health.



Similar to Chiropractic in its objective but uses a different technique.  Osteopaths often get good results, however, they are not normally trained to read and take X-rays.



This uses the Chinese model of how the body works in order to bring about pain relief.  The needles look painful but usually are not and many people get good results with Acupuncture.



Very invasive and risky but sometimes the only answer. The most severe cases, fortunately a small minority, can cause other problems such as incontinence.  It is recommended that you try other methods before you opt for the surgical route.

Here are some Do’s and Don’ts:



•     Use a hot water bottle CAUTIOUSLY if it feels soothing

•     Sleep on a firm mattress

•     Seek specialist treatment as soon as possible



•     Lay in bed for long extended periods

•     Exceed the recommended dose of painkillers

•     Lift anything heavy, especially while twisting


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