Knowledge is Spinal Health: Getting to Know the Spinal Motion Segment
Good spinal health begins with having all the facts in hand: have you heard of spinal motion segments?
Spinal motion segments have two main functions: facilitating movement of the upper body and stabilizing the spine in order to prevent injury from excessive movement. They consist of: 2 vertebrae, 2 facet joints, 1 intervertebral disc and a whole network of supportive soft tissue. The vertebrae, intervertebral disc and facet joints form the articular triad; these are the structures that allow for minute articulation between vertebrae and thus, when all the spinal motion segments are put together, for the overall articulation of the spine and upper body.
What happens when these spinal motion segments suffer from damage or dysfunction?
The two main dangers facing your spinal motion segments are hypomobility and hypermobility, the former being limited range of motion and the latter being excessive range of motion. Both of these can stress the facet joints, damage vertebrae and herniate the intervertebral discs. Furthermore, in each spinal motion segment there are spinal nerves which pass on through and innervate other parts of the body. These nerves can become compressed and cause pain.
Keeping your spinal motion segments healthy…
…starts with good diet and plenty of exercise! But as we get older, our spines succumb to the accumulated pressures of gravity, age and poor posture. At this point, they can use the helping hand of chiropractic which maintains alignment of the spine through the spinal motion segments. We use gentle chiropractic modalities to restore spinal alignment, improve circulation to injurious regions and maintain a healthy range of motion. When compression causes dysfunction in the spinal motion segments, we respond with modalities such as decompression which elongate the spine and create healing space between the vertebrae. If you are interested in improving your spinal health using chiropractic, give our office a call to schedule an appointment today.
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