Medical researchers estimate that four out of five adults in the United States experience back or neck pain at some point in their lifetimes. For many, the pain becomes an ongoing or chronic issue that can impair your ability to work, enjoy social activities, and reach the life goals you’ve set for yourself.
Our holistic and medical approach at Santa Cruz Osteopathics in Captiola, California, takes a patient-first view of chronic neck and back pain. Richard Bernstein, DO, along with our dedicated staff of warm professionals at Santa Cruz Osteopathics provide comprehensive treatment strategies for your pain that address your symptoms as well as the underlying issue(s) responsible for your discomfort. Their recommendations for chronic neck and back pain often include spinal decompression therapy.
What is spinal decompression therapy?
Spinal decompression therapy is based on the same principles as spinal traction, which has been offered by trained health care professionals as a potential treatment for back and neck pain for decades.
Unlike fixed traction, however, spinal decompression uses a mechanical device to apply carefully controlled cycles of gentle stretching and relaxation movements that can help regulate the space between your vertebrae and stabilize muscles in your back.
This stretching and relaxation action helps move herniated or bulging discs back to their normal position and promotes a healing environment by allowing nutrient-rich cerebrospinal fluid to flow back into the damaged disc.
What conditions can spinal decompression treat?
When added to a comprehensive treatment plan, spinal decompression therapy may play a vital role in treatment for:
- Bone spurs
- Degenerative disc disease
- Herniated discs
- Sciatica and other conditions arising from pinched or irritated nerves
At Santa Cruz Osteopathics, we don’t recommend spinal decompression as a standalone treatment for back or neck pain. Rather, we offer it as part of a well-rounded strategy that’s designed to control your symptoms and address the underlying cause of your back pain. Dr. Bernstein may recommend therapy that also includes guided physical rehabilitation, spinal adjustments, and regenerative treatments.
Is spinal decompression safe?
It’s not recommended for individuals with osteoporosis and certain types of cancer. Santa Cruz Osteopathics provides thorough exams and careful reviews of your medical history before we recommend spinal decompression therapy.
Spinal decompression therapy is a safe and often-effective step in treating chronic neck and back pain without surgery. You may experience some stretching of your muscles during a session, which most patients report feels nice. You should not experience actual pain with spinal decompression. If the procedure becomes uncomfortable for you, simply let your provider know, and we will work with you for the best therapy for your needs.
What is a spinal decompression session like?
Dress comfortably since you remain fully-clothed while you’re laying on the treatment table during a spinal decompression session. Dr. Bernstein then attaches a harness around your pelvis and trunk that connects with a moveable portion of the treatment table.
The table is designed to split apart slightly and then come together again as it takes your spine gently through the programmed stretching and relaxation process associated with spinal decompression.
Each session generally lasts 30-45 minutes, and you may require several sessions to achieve optimal results. Dr. Bernstein discusses treatment expectations and goals in detail, including the number of sessions he recommends, before scheduling your spinal decompression therapy.
If you’re experiencing chronic neck and back pain, our us at Santa Cruz Osteopathics at 831-464-1605. We’re proud to offer a host of nonsurgical remedies that can alleviate your symptoms and address the underlying condition responsible for your pain. Call our office today to schedule your visit, or request an appointment online.