Ottawa Chiropractic Care Respects Spinal Extension

Extension of the spine: It is good. It is bad. So what’s with spinal extension? Both are true: It is beneficial. It is harmful. It is the job of your Ottawa chiropractor to help you determine the role of extension in your Ottawa back pain relief plan and Ottawa back pain control plan in the future. Your Ottawa chiropractor at The practice of Dr. Tim Schneider is well experienced in the effects – good and bad – of spinal extension and respects its role in spinal health and motion.

SPINAL CURVES

Two of the spine’s most noticeable curves – the cervical and lumbar curves – are lordotic curves meaning they curve concavely. Flexion flattens these curves. Extension magnifies them. When a disc herniates or bulges, it does so into the concavity of the curve and potentially pushes on the spinal nerves resulting in pain. Flexion usually allows the disc bulge to get away from the nerve. Extension often permits the disc bulge to compress the nerves more. The practice of Dr. Tim Schneider intends to help reduce painful situations like this!

SPINAL MOTION

75% of the flexion and extension movement in the low back happens at the L5-S1 level of the lumbar spine. 20% happens at the L4-L5 level. Therefore, 95% of flexion and extension of the lumbar spine happens at these two lower disc levels. Here, degenerative disc disease (minor and more advanced) occurs most. In the cervical spine, C5-C6 is the spinal level where most of the flexion takes place, and C4-C5 is where most of the extension takes place. Ottawa chiropractic patients need beneficial extension!

SPINAL EXTENSION

The practice of Dr. Tim Schneider respects extension and gets how it may benefit and hurt. The extensor muscles in the back weaken and degenerate just like discs do. (1) Extension helps strengthen these muscles to support the spine. Extension is essential for this when the spine is healthy enough to perform extension. Extension to a painful spine may hurt. Why? In the cervical spine, flexion reduced disc protrusion and enlarges the sagittal diameter of the vertebral canal while extension made the disc herniation larger and narrowed the vertebral canal producing stenosis. (2) In a degenerative lumbar spine with spinal stenosis, flexion widened the vertebral canal and relieved pain while extension worsened the stenosis and triggered pain. (3) The practice of Dr. Tim Schneider knows the key to eliciting the benefits of extension is in recognizing when to apply extension.

Ottawa CHIROPRACTIC USE OF EXTENSION

Ottawa chiropractic treatment integrates extension into the Ottawa chiropractic treatment plan for its advantages. Cox® Technic used with the cervical spine reduced intradiscal pressures to as low as 502 mmHg (4) and to as low as -192 mmHg in the lumbar spine. (5) Extension increased pressures in the lumbar spine to 1250 mmHg (the highest amount the transducer could measure). (4) Dropping intradiscal pressures and back pain is what The practice of Dr. Tim Schneider aims to do for its Ottawa back pain patients.

CONTACT The practice of Dr. Tim Schneider

Listen to this PODCAST with Dr. David Atiyeh on the Back Doctor’s Podcast with Dr. Michael Johnson. He shares how he cared for a patient whose back pain continues after multiple back surgeries with flexion distraction which gives her relief as the table is flexed not extended.

Schedule your Ottawa chiropractic appointment with The practice of Dr. Tim Schneider today. Let us figure out the role extension might have in your back pain recovery and future back pain control strategy.

 The practice of Dr. Tim Schneider understands the role of extension in spinal motion, its necessity, its benefits and potential harmful effects.  
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