When should you see a doctor for a slipped disc?In particularly bad cases, a herniated disc can affect the spinal cord (spinal canal = spinal cord canal) or the nerve cords (spinal nerves) in such a way that a so-called cauda equina syndrome- occurs. Cauda equina is a collection of nerve roots within the lower spine. symptoms of failure such as paralysis. Loss of sensibility are symptoms of this syndrome. On your skin, for example, you would feel neither touch nor pain with this disorder. The bladder and intestines may also be affected, so that you are unable to hold stool and urine and notice numbness in the genital area.
Generally speaking: Such severe herniated discs with serious nerve damage are extremely rare. However, if you notice pronounced signs of paralysis, muscle weakness or fecal/urinary incontinence, you should consult a doctor immediately to clarify the exact nature of your condition!
Does every herniated disc cause symptoms?
As I said: Severe manifestations of a herniated disc are extremely rare. The opposite is much more common: herniated discs are often discovered by chance, even after many years of incorrect use, because the person affected does not complain of any discomfort at all.
Did you know that every third German is around 30 years old?. If you have a herniated disc or any abnormalities in your intervertebral discs before the age of 18 – but without complaining of back pain? This figure is twice as high among 60-year-olds. And what's more: 75% of all 28-year-olds already have slight cracks in their intervertebral discs. 5)
Granted: If you're sitting at your computer or smartphone in a hell of a lot of pain, the results of such studies won't do you much good. Or maybe you do? Doesn't this suggest that your pain could have a completely different trigger than what X-rays, computer tomography or MRI scans reveal about your intervertebral discs and nerves?? We at Liebscher& Bracht are convinced that. In the chapter on the causes of a herniated disc, you can find out where your pain really comes from in most cases.
How can I prevent?
Well-stretched muscles and fascia at the front of the body and a variety of movements for your back are the most important prerequisites to prevent a slipped disc. With our specially developed exercises you can achieve this in just a few minutes a day. As a preventive measure we recommend,
in addition to our exercises, also the following:
SportBasically, from our point of view there is no back-friendly or back-damaging sport. The most important thing is that you don't have any pain while doing sports and that you compensate the typical movement patterns of a sport with the help of our exercises. Swimming (and not only backstroke!) can be just as good for you from this perspective as, for example, riding a bicycle. By the way, this is not done with raised handlebars, but by making your back round and resting it as much as possible on your sporty handlebars. In this way, you avoid a restrained posture on the bike. Train your back quasi by the way. Avoid overweightNo, not what you think. Because from our point of view, the kilos on the scale hardly play a role for the condition of your intervertebral discs. The spine is built to carry incredible loads – whether 60 or 120 kilograms is rather negligible. However, you should still pay attention to a healthy body weight, because this is usually accompanied by a responsible diet – which in turn can improve the supply of important nutrients to your intervertebral discs. can help you get rid of back pain while you sleep. – Do you have a Job, if you have to sit a lot, our exercises are especially important as a compensation. An ergonomic chair, a height-adjustable desk and regularly changing your sitting position can also be useful. But they are in no way sufficient on their own. – If you have back pain, you should not lift heavy loads. If you are pain-free, the following is often recommended for lifting: Bend your knees, keep your back straight and lift the object. Keep your arms close to your body. We say: Such a movement will only consolidate your muscular problems in the back, because you do not get your back moving. Much better: bend your back by making yourself completely round and go back upwards, vertebra by vertebra, when lifting the load.
How is a herniated disc diagnosed??
If you have decided to see an orthopedist, he or she will first ask you about your complaints and possible risk factors. You should tell him where exactly your pain occurs, how it can be described and since when it has existed. It is also important for the doctor to know whether your pain increases with certain movements and whether you notice any other symptoms.
After the interview, the doctor will probably do some neurological tests on you. Since many doctors associate your pain with nerve irritation or nerve damage, these tests aim to determine the exact location of a possible injury. Your reflexes and mobility are checked in particular.
If the doctor suspects that you have a herniated disc (discus prolapse), he will order an X-ray examination for an exact diagnosis. This provides information about possible changes in your vertebrae, the intervertebral discs and the spinal canal. Imaging techniques such as magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), computed tomography (CT) or myelography can also be used to visualize the spinal cord and nerve roots.
X-ray, MRI and CT are "blind" to the real causes
As helpful as these procedures can be in individual cases, their usefulness for a sensible treatment of your pain is usually limited. In the meantime, parts of orthodox medicine have come to this conclusion themselves:
The correlation of imaging findings with clinical symptoms is not good. Often findings in MRI examinations are overestimated [and] contribute to the uncertainty of patients […]." 6)
In other words, what you see in the pictures often has nothing to do with what you experience as pain. Us from Liebscher& Bracht is not surprised by this verdict. Because overstretched muscles and fascia remain virtually invisible in imaging techniques. In our experience, however, it is precisely these faulty tensions that trigger your complaints in the case of a herniated disc. We will give you all the information you need in the next chapter. Download now our free PDF guide against herniated discs. Start right away with the best exercises for a pain-free life!
2. What are the true causes of a herniated disc??
– Intervertebral discs function like shock absorbers between the individual vertebral bodies. As a buffer, they dampen stresses. Withstand the pulling action of muscles. – The disc has a cartilaginous fibrous ring on the outside and a gel-like core on the inside. This consists largely of water. – Uniform loading and unloading through varied movement of the back keeps the intervertebral discs healthy – insufficient or one-sided movement makes them sick. – The more muscles and fasciae span the front of the body and the back around the spine, the more the vertebrae are pulled towards each other. The intervertebral disc gets "under the wheels", the fibrous ring can burst. – The conventional view is that the core of the disc, which has come out of the fibrous ring, is pressing on the nerve root or nerve, causing pain. We counter: Most of the time, pain is "just" a warning signal from the body to protect you.
How such pain can best be treated? The therapy chapter 3 will tell you.
The human back is an extremely complex structure of bones, muscles and nerve cords. Its central element is the spinal column. It has an extremely delicate structure in order to be able to cope with a wide range of demands. The intervertebral discs play a key role.
What is an intervertebral disc and what is its function in a healthy state prior to a herniated disc??
The human spine consists of 24 free vertebrae that are stabilized in the longitudinal axis by two ligaments – the anterior and posterior longitudinal ligaments. The anterior longitudinal ligament is firmly connected to the vertebral bodies, the posterior ligament to the intervertebral discs.
23 such intervertebral discs (discus invertebralis) are present in the human spine. These are much more than simple placeholders: they function like a shock absorber between the individual vertebrae. As a buffer, they cushion shocks. Withstand the pulling action of muscles.
In a healthy state, this works in an amazing way. Let's ame you are sitting on an office chair. Then the weight of your upper body creates a prere of about 4.5 bars in the lower discs of the lumbar spine – twice as much as in a car tire. If you lift a water box, for example, a force equivalent to a weight of 80-120 kg acts on the intervertebral discs. In no other tie of your body there are higher tensions! 7)
However, such loads are not harmful. On the contrary: they are even vital for the survival of your intervertebral discs. This is due to its nature: The outer ring of an intervertebral disc consists of several layers of actually tear-resistant fibers. This cartilaginous Fibrous ring (Anulus fibrosus) stabilizes the intervertebral discs and attaches itself to the vertebral bodies. Inside lies a soft Galactic nucleus (nucleus pulposus), which consists of 80 to 85 percent water. Thanks to its high water content, it ensures that the intervertebral disc cushions the prere load between the vertebral bodies like a gel pillow.
Blood vessels and nerves do not exist in the nucleus pulposus. The intervertebral disc tie supplies itself with nutrients via the surrounding tie fluid. This occurs according to the Sponge principle: When prere is applied to the disc, the fluid is forced out of the gelatinous core. As a result, the water content of the nucleus decreases. If the intervertebral disc is relieved, the nucleus fills up again with the – in the best case nutrient-rich – fluid.
What happens in your body during a herniated disc?
In the case of a herniated disc (prolapse, discus prolapse), the prere on the disc tie eventually becomes too great. The vertebrae are pulled together in such a way that the intervertebral discs between them can no longer absorb the force acting on them. In a first step, the gelatinous core pushes against the envelope, i.e. the fibrous ring – the disc deforms. If the annulus fibrosus, i.e. the fibrous ring, remains intact, physicians speak of a protrusion (disc protrusion).
If the outer fibrous ring can no longer withstand the prere, it tears and literally bursts. This causes part of the gelatinous core to leak out. Presses itself into the spaces between the vertebral body. This rupture of the ring and the exit of the nucleus represents the transition from protrusion to prolapse, i.e. the Herniated disc.
Where does the pain of a herniated disc come from??
Our experience shows the following: The herniated disc, as a tear, is an injury, but it is not the cause of the symptoms. According to our understanding, the back pain originates differently.
Triggered by muscular-fascial tensile forces that press the vertebral bodies with too much prere on the intervertebral discs.
This explanation also applies to symptoms such as tingling, numbness or coldness. Especially in the buttocks, the muscles and fascia are often so overstretched that they can "squeeze" nerves and blood vessels there.
According to conventional opinion, your discomfort is caused by the leaking bile core, which presses on the surrounding tie at the spine. The nerves coming from the spinal cord (spinal nerves) and nerve roots in the spinal canal (spinal canal), according to the common amption, are irritated or damaged. Root irritation syndrome or radiculopathy is the common diagnosis. This radiculopathy leads to pain in the supply area of the involved nerve root and the various neurological symptoms.
We are not convinced by this explanation for several reasons:
1. Make yourself aware once again: There are people with herniated discs who have no back pain at all. Many do not even know that they have a herniated disc. The body usually breaks down the leaked gelatinous nucleus on its own without causing any trouble. Conventional wisdom refers to this as a "silent herniation" in which neither the sciatic nerve nor any other nerves are involved. 2. Even if spinal nerves are involved, the following question must be asked: How can such a soft gelatinous core pinch off a finger-sized nerve? Even former surgeons who trained with us as therapists could not find a logical answer to this question. 3. Finally, experiments have shown that mechanical compression of the nerve root does not necessarily cause pain. 4. Recent research suggests that mechanical compression of the nerve root may not adequately explain sciatic pain in lumbar disc herniation in particular. It is always necessary to take into account certain chemical reactions of the leaked material of the intervertebral disc and a response of the immune system to it. Here inflammation processes arise, which are more or less strongly involved in the pain development. 9) 5. It has also been proven that the extent of the worn disc nucleus has no effect on the success of therapy with conservative measures. If the "compression theory" were unrestrictedly correct, this connection should be visible. 10)
What are alarm pains in the case of a herniated disc??
Receptors in the periosteum register the threat of damage to your intervertebral discs and joints. They transmit this information to the brain. As soon as the warning arrives that the wear and tear is greater than your body's ability to repair it, the brain reacts: it projects a pain exactly where the wear and tear is triggered: your intervertebral discs. If you have pain, your body is signaling to you: something is wrong in the affected region of the body! Pay attention and eliminate the cause of your pain! Therefore we call this pain "alarm pain".
Who is right now? You can easily find this out for yourself by trying our exercises and listening to yourself afterwards. Most likely, you will notice: The pain has decreased significantly! Can there be a better proof that not the bulging disc or the herniated disc itself, but the muscular tensions are responsible for the pain?
What factors promote a herniated disc?? The common doctrine assigns age in the development of a herniated disc. A key role of a herniated disc. With increasing age of a person, the intervertebral disc loses its elasticity and is less able to store water. This natural aging process causes the fibrous ring to tear faster. 11) According to this logic, behind a herniated disc is therefore years of age-related wear and tear, degeneration as the greatest risk factor.
– overweight, – heavy strain in childhood and adolescence (e.g. B. heavy physical work, – poor posture and – one-sided movement/lack of movement increase the risk of a herniated disc. 12)
The quality of your movements is the key
For us, the age thing is only half the truth. Just like a genetic predisposition or overweight. It doesn't matter whether you're a jock or a jock in the office. Anyone can get a herniated disc in the cervical spine or lumbar spine – we're convinced of it. And all can prevent it!
Why this is so, explains pain specialist Roland Liebscher-Bracht in this
Video in great detail:
Discs in distress
The decisive factor is the quality of your movements. Especially in the case of prolapse in the lumbar spine, lack of exercise, frequent sitting or one-sided strength training are usually the causes rather than age or possibly existing obesity. When sitting or doing abdominal exercises, the muscles in the front of the body become "unyielding". We at Liebscher& Bracht also speak metaphorically of "shortening". This creates tension, which is compensated for by the posterior body muscles by building up counter-tension. The intervertebral disc literally goes under the wheels: Front and back muscles on the abdomen and back push the vertebral bodies together in such a way that the intervertebral disc between the bones is strongly compressed.
The body can tolerate this for a while, but as we age, the vertebral bodies are pulled tighter together by the tension. An additional load, such as lifting out a water jug, can then suddenly lead to a herniated disc.
Intervertebral discs "starve" over time
In addition, the intervertebral disc tie can become inflamed with one-sided stress or. Movement patterns no longer sufficiently supply with nutrients. Unfortunately, in our modern (working) everyday life, we find ourselves aming certain positions very frequently – sitting, for example. This makes us tilt vertebral bodies only at certain angles, while neglecting others. This can cause the discs to be squeezed frequently in a certain place and leak their fluid, but they are rarely relieved there to take up nutrients again. The intervertebral disc material can then quickly lose its elasticity with age and literally "starve to death". Download now our free PDF guide against herniated discs. Start right away with the best exercises for a pain-free life!
3. Treatment of a herniated disc according to Liebscher& Bracht
In short& Scarce
– In the case of a herniated disc, it is worth relaxing muscles and fasciae. The looser they become, the sooner your body can turn off the pain – even if the X-ray shows visible changes and a herniation has already been diagnosed. – Stretching exercises, fascia rolling massages and osteoprere are real alternatives to painkillers, injections and surgery. They address the cause instead of just the symptoms. – Beware of one-sided strength training: physiotherapy, which is supposed to strengthen the muscles, will in the worst case only increase your pain.
You want to try out immediately whether our exercises help you? Stretches for all areas of the back await in the next chapter.
Before you let a doctor prescribe you strong painkillers or even decide for an operation, try our treatment by all means. In this case, we try to relieve the tension in muscles and fascia through osteoprere, fascia rolling massages and tightness stretching exercises. In many patients with herniated discs, our therapy has been able to significantly alleviate the pain or even eliminate it completely.
What characterizes the therapy of a herniated disc according to Liebscher&? Bracht
You can easily participate in our therapy – completely without side effects! A basic amption of modern fascia research shapes our treatment approach:
"Even the smallest disturbances in the connective tie, which is densely equipped with pain receptors and movement sensors […] can cause pain: Above all, many […] back complaints often seem to be nothing but fascia pain." 13)
"Feed" your brain with new movement programs
Although the cause of back pain is muscular-fascial tension, the pain itself is known to originate in the brain. And here is also reflected how you move: In certain areas of the brain, movement programs are stored that you call up particularly frequently in your everyday life. These decide your fascia and muscle tension. The good thing: The programs are trainable!
Even if it is difficult – be active!
That's why it's not a good idea to take it easy or not move at all when you have a slipped disc. This realization has now also become accepted in conventional treatment. 14)
However, you should be smart and improve the quality of your movements: For example, if you integrate our bottleneck stretching exercises into your daily routine, other movement programs will be created in the brain in the long run. This will erase the "pain ratings" in the corresponding area of the brain. Muscle and fascia tensions finally decrease and the intervertebral discs are relieved.
For you, this means: You don't have to make your life subordinate to your pain! You don't need surgery, no medication, no special bed and no special pillow. You don't have to run from doctor to doctor, stay in bed for weeks, and watch life outside from the window. Do our exercises consistently and regularly. Then you take control yourself. Actively fight your pain!
By the way, in addition to the stretching exercises – which you can use to lasting freedom from pain In any case, you should make this your daily routine – we offer you three more building blocks for the treatment of your herniated disc:
– If your back pain is so severe that nothing more can be done, we will put you in one of the Liebscher& Bring trained therapists near you to your heart. It can be treated with the help of our acute measure, the Osteoprere, usually provide initial relief and go through the exercises with you afterwards. All details about osteoprere can be found here. – You can also get the prere technique of osteoprere applied by our therapists in a light variant directly in your living room. With our presser set you can then press the most important points to relax your back muscles yourself. Where exactly you can find these points and how you should press them, we will show you in our extra exercise section. in turn, can effectively complement your stretching exercises. They help you to loosen overstretched muscles and fascia, so that the stimuli set in the exercises can be optimally processed. In addition, the stimulation of the intercellular space helps to remove accumulated waste in the connective tie and stimulate repair processes of the fascia.
What is the conventional treatment for a herniated disc??
If you are examined by a doctor and he or she diagnoses a protrusion or herniated disc, he or she will usually advise conservative therapy. It is composed of two basic pillars :
pain and anti-inflammatory medication and muscle relaxants are designed to relieve your pain and relax your muscles. In case of severe discomfort, cortisone is also injected via targeted injections. This is to prevent you from adopting a relieving posture due to the pain, which would further aggravate your symptoms. Conventional physiotherapies – z. B. the classical physiotherapy – aim after the acute phase to normalize your back musculature or to improve it. strengthen your muscles.
From our point of view, all common treatments fall short. Physiotherapy, which is supposed to strengthen your muscles, only increases your pain in the worst case scenario. If already completely overstrained muscles are additionally trained, the overstrain increases more and more. So it happens exactly the opposite of what you actually want to achieve. Roland Liebscher-Bracht tells you more details about the advantages and disadvantages of strength training against back pain in this video.
It is similar with painkillers. If a warning light in your car is flashing, you wouldn't just turn it off without eliminating the reason for it, would you?? The alarm pain is your body's own warning lights -. You should not permanently eliminate them with painkillers.
Medication only treats the symptoms, but never eliminates the cause of your pain. In addition, they often have many side effects that put additional strain on your body. The actual "culprit", your muscular-fascial tensions, may continue to do its mischief.
Is a stepped bedding useful?
What about a stepped bedding? You place your lower legs at right angles to your thighs, which is supposed to relieve the prere on the nerve root that is supposedly trapped between the vertebrae. In fact, this position can relieve your pain – but it won't get you any further if you want to get rid of your discomfort permanently. However, you can use the stepped position as a starting position to practice peu a`peu into pain freedom.
Pain specialist Roland Liebscher-Bracht shows you how this works in this video Video:
Surgery as a last resort against a herniated disc?
Many doctors draw the red line after six to eight weeks: If neither painkillers nor physiotherapy have helped by then, conventional treatment often advises disc surgery followed by rehab treatment. This happens especially when the pain no longer allows a normal life or there are signs of paralysis.
Basically, intervertebral disc surgery can be divided between
– minimally invasive (endoscopic) procedures, – microsurgical techniques – and open surgery (open discectomy).
Minimally invasive procedures deserve a closer look. You may be familiar with such endoscopic techniques under the term "keyhole surgery. These operations – in contrast to discectomy – are intended to spare the tie. Can be performed in neurosurgery/orthopedics under local anesthesia with a narrow skin incision on an outpatient basis. For herniated discs, surgeons now use dissolution of the disc nucleus (chemonucleolysis), laser ablation and removal of disc material through the skin using a thin cannula (percutaneous nucleotomy). 15) 16) 17)
The catch: Minimally invasive procedures are not suitable for all patients. They are only suitable for simple and fresh disc bulges and herniated discs. These methods are also unsuitable for patients who have already undergone surgery.
In addition, as with any surgery, disc surgery can lead to complications and can sometimes result in scar tie – even if the skin incision and cannula are narrow. The scar tie can proliferate. Lead to new complaints. Under certain circumstances, further surgery may be necessary to remove the scar tie.
Pain returns in 30 out of 100 patients after open disc surgery. After microsurgery, this happens in twelve out of 100 patients. 18)
Given these numbers, you're right to ask: Is the outcome worth the risk of surgery?? No, says Prof. Dr. med. H. S. Fuebl from Munich:
"Clinical studies show that patients do not fare worse under conservative therapy than after surgery. The risk of suffering permanent neurological damage without surgery is minimal and certainly less than suffering a complication during surgery or experiencing no improvement in symptoms." 19)
And what about sports?
Which type of sport is best for you after a herniated disc also depends on which section of the spine was affected. OK is what does not cause pain.
– Swimming, cycling without elevated handlebars, walking on soft surfaces or gentle yoga exercises are recommended. – You should avoid sports that could overload your spine. Lifting heavy loads is taboo for now, sports with body contact are rather unfavorable. Download our free PDF guide to herniated discs now. Start right away with the best exercises for a pain-free life!
4. The best exercises against your pain with a slipped disc
– The most important thing for healthy discs: Plenty of exercise! With our exercises you can treat your back with just a few minutes a day. – Ideal for beginners: Exercise videos with pain specialist Roland Liebscher-Bracht, who explains each step in detail. Naturally at the perfect pace. – Exercise flow for the entire back or special program for the cervical spine – the choice is yours! – Even more exercises for your entire back, a fascia roll massage against the tensions and a light osteoprere for particularly fast help you get in our free guide to the herniated disc.
Essential for healthy intervertebral discs is a balanced and sufficient movement, so that they can supply themselves with enough nutrients. However, your everyday life is probably characterized by sedentary activities. Then you should prevent the muscles and fascia in the front part of the body from becoming more and more unyielding. To do this, you need to counteract your lopsided posture.
Not a surgeon, but you yourself have your back health in hand! Even if your doctor has already diagnosed you with a herniated disc, you can actively fight your pain and get rid of it permanently. With which exercises this can be done very easily, we now reveal to you.
If you already know our exercises, you are welcome to start immediately. However, if you are new to the bottleneck stretches, please first read through this checklist of guidelines for the exercises.
Exercise flow for the entire back in case of a herniated disc
In order to offer you an all-round program, we have developed an special exercise sequence Developed that you can do in the event of a herniated disc or also for prevention. Your spinal discs will love this flow! Roland Liebscher-Bracht explains exactly how the exercise sequence for the lumbar spine to the sacrum works in the exercise video on our special page:
Exercises for a herniated disc of the cervical spine
Herniated discs in the cervical spine are less common than in the lower back, but at least as painful – especially for the neck. But don't worry: You can also directly relieve your cervical spine of muscular-fascial tension. To fight the main cause of your discomfort. Pain specialist Roland Liebscher-Bracht explains step by step how to do it and what you have to consider.
Take a look at the following Video in participatory length at. Roland Liebscher-Bracht shows you a fascia rolling massage and an exercise in five steps that you can use to treat a herniated disc in the cervical spine yourself from home. The exercises are also perfect for prevention.
The complete exercise to read and all the important details you get on our exercise page for herniated disc in the cervical spine.
The back saver for simple stretching exercises
– Fights back pain and herniated discs at the source: muscular-fascial tension at the front of your body – just lay on it – done. 2 minutes daily are enough – Applicable in the upper and lower back – Massage effect for tensions in the back – Stretching gradually adjustable, progress measurable
Start now with our tool for particularly simple stretching exercises in everyday life!