Category: Spine | Author: Stefano Sinicropi | Date: May 3, 2017
Problems with our spinal discs can contribute to a number of different painful conditions in our back. Discs can wear down or herniate, both of which can lead to discomfort, pain or a decrease in mobility. Thankfully, new research suggests that there’s one key treatment technique that may help strengthen our intervertebral discs.
Improving Your Spinal Discs
According to new research published in Scientific Reports, running may strengthen our intervertebral discs more than originally thought. Running has always been viewed as an activity that helps to strengthen muscles, but discs have been considered a “slow tissue” in terms of response to exercise. However, new research suggest that might not be the case.
“Prior research in the last decade had shown that the IVD components are replaced extremely slowly, leading researchers to think it would take longer than the average human lifespan to have an impact on the disc with interventions like exercise and medication,” said lead researcher Daniel Belavy from Deakin University’s Institute for Physical Activity and Nutrition. “However, in this study we have been able to show that regular physical activity, such as jogging, can actually strengthen the intervertebral discs.”
Interestingly, researchers said you may not even need to run to help improve your disc health.
“Our findings showed no difference between joggers and long-distance runners and, in fact, indicated that walking might be enough,” said Belavy, who stressed the importance of finding small times throughout the day to get some extra steps in. “Even going got a walk during a break at work, or choosing to take the stairs rather than the elevators is good for the discs, as well as for overall back health.”
Why Disc Health Is So Important
Taking care of your spinal discs is extremely important, especially as we get older. Aside from problems like disc degeneration and herniated discs, weakened discs can lead to a number of different spinal disabilities. The Global Burden of Disease Report suggests that spine pain is one of the greatest healthcare costs to developed societies in terms of disability and loss of productivity, so it’s important to strengthen our discs when we’re young to ensure they remain healthy as we age.
Minnesota Spine Doctor
So if you’re dealing with spine pain, or you simply want to help protect and strengthen your spinal discs, just head outside and go for a run or a walk. The weather is only going to get nicer, so lace up your running shoes and hit the trails. If you’re not much of a runner, make it a priority to do some more walking and get more steps each and every day. The best way to treat spinal disc problems are by preventing them from developing in the first place, so take some preventive steps (pun intended) and help protect your spinal discs!