Degenerative Disc Disease

Degenerative Disc Disease Treatment in Kansas City

What is Degenerative Disc Disease?

Degenerative Disc Disease, often called DDD, is a condition that affects your spine. Think of your spine like a stack of blocks; between each block, there’s a soft, spongy disc. These discs act like small shock absorbers, preventing the bones from rubbing against each other.

But as we age, these discs can start to break down or wear out. That’s what DDD is — the wear-and-tear of these discs over time. This can cause back or neck pain and can make it difficult to do everyday activities.

While it sounds scary, remember, it’s not a disease, but a natural part of aging, though, for some people, it can be more painful than for others.

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Symptoms of Degenerative Disc Disease

If you have Degenerative Disc Disease, you may notice many symptoms. One of the most common is a constant, nagging pain in your back or neck. This pain could get worse when you’re sitting, bending, lifting, or twisting.

Sometimes, it can even travel to other parts of your body like your arms and legs, a sensation known as radiating pain. You might also notice that your pain is more severe at certain times of the day or after specific activities.

Some people with DDD find that their pain lessens when moving or walking. Lastly, you may feel your back isn’t as strong as before, or you might experience sudden episodes of severe pain, called flare-ups.

Remember, everyone’s experience with DDD can be a little different, so it’s important to talk to a doctor if you notice any of these symptoms.

Degenerative Disc Disease Treatment

Treating Degenerative Disc Disease focuses on relieving the symptoms and improving the quality of your life. Your doctor might recommend several strategies, including:

  • Physical therapy – This involves specific exercises and stretches to strengthen your back, improve flexibility, and promote a healthier spine
  • Pain medications – Over-the-counter pain relievers or prescription medications can help manage the pain associated with DDD
  • Heat and cold therapy – Using heat pads or cold packs can help to reduce inflammation and soothe pain
  • Lifestyle changes – Maintaining a healthy weight, quitting smoking, and regular exercise can all contribute to better spine health
  • Surgery – In rare cases when other treatments haven’t worked, spine surgery might be an option. There are various types, like spinal fusion or artificial disc replacement

Degenerative Disc Disease Care in Kansas City

If you have any of the above symptoms, please contact Orthopedic Health of Kansas City to make an appointment with our spine and back specialists in Kansas City. Our team has the tools to do a full assessment, correctly identify any problems, and suggest the best way to treat them.

Whether it’s basic physical therapy or advanced surgical procedures, trust that you’re in capable hands at Orthopedic Health of Kansas City. Our goal is to do whatever it takes to get you back to your normal routine and improve the quality of your life.