Understanding Cervical Spondylosis

As we age, our bones and joints begin to deteriorate and lose mass. This explains why more than 85% of people over the age of 60 are affected by cervical spondylosis, a condition where the bones, discs, and joints in your neck deteriorate as a result of aging. 

At Grand Island Chiropractic Center, we’re well-experienced in diagnosing and treating cervical spondylosis. From our office in Grand Island, Nebraska, our physicians Timothy Dunugan, DC, and Brian Dunugan, DC, are ready to cover all your spinal care needs. That’s why we’ve compiled this helpful guide on understanding cervical spondylosis. 

How do I know if I have cervical spondylosis?

Also called cervical osteoarthritis, cervical spondylosis is the normal wear and tear of the bones, joints, and discs in your neck. Unfortunately the condition doesn’t always present with symptoms. When symptoms do appear, they include:

As you can see, spondylosis symptoms aren’t just confined to your neck. Pain and stiffness can travel down to your shoulders, arms, and hands. The pain and nerve damage can even radiate down to your lower back, affecting your bladder, bowels, and reproductive system. 

Risk factors for cervical spondylosis 

As we mentioned earlier, age is the most common risk factor for spondylosis. You may also be placed at an increased risk of developing the condition if you’re a smoker, have a family history of the condition, have sustained serious injuries, or are placed at increased risk because of your occupation. 

Keeping yourself at a healthy weight helps to reduce your risk of developing the condition, as extra weight can place undue pressure on your lower back. The most common areas affected by cervical spondylosis include your lower back and neck. 

Your neck is at higher risk due to bad posture caused by using a computer, phone, and reading. And your lower back is placed at an increased risk because it’s the part of your back that supports your entire body weight. 

How we diagnose and treat cervical spondylosis

When diagnosing cervical spondylosis, we begin with a physical assessment and an inventory of your symptoms. We then will likely order imaging tests, like an X-ray or MRI, so we can see if a slipped disc or broken bone is causing your symptoms. 

Depending on the severity and cause of your symptoms, we may recommend the following therapies:

You may also want to opt for electrical muscle and nerve stimulation, cold beam laser, therapeutic ultrasound, and nerve block injections if you’re experiencing severe pain. Injections are a good option as they can alleviate pain for months following your treatment. 

To learn more about cervical spondylosis, call our Grand Island, Nebraska, office or book an appointment online today.

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