A C5 C6 disc that is herniated can cause incredible pain and disability for the person suffering with it. This article will discuss the most common symptoms associated with a C5 C6 herniated disc, causes, and three things you can do from home for relief.
Before we get into all of that, though, we need to discuss what a herniated disc is, because without this background, the rest of the information will not make sense.
The discs of the spine serve 2 purposes. First of all, they are a special type of ligament, which holds the bones of the spine together. There are actually 23 discs of the spine, each one separating 2 bones.
The second purpose of the disc is to act as a cushion, or shock-absorber whenever you move. Because the disc is separating the bones of the spine, it prevents the bones from touching whenever you move (which would be very painful).
Now, the intervertebral discs are very special in the way they are made. They each have a firm outer covering (called the annulus), and a jelly center (called the nucleus). When a disc herniates, the outer covering will tear (and we’ll talk about why in just a moment), and the jelly starts to shift from the center of the disc into the area where the disc is weak from the tear.
This creates a bulge in the disc, which sounds like it would be painful, but surprisingly, the discs of the spine are designed to not feel pain. Why? Well, think about it – if one of the main purposes of the disc is to absorb shock, wouldn’t it make sense that it be designed to not feel pain? After all, if the discs of the spine did feel pain, you would hurt every time you move!
So, the question becomes – if a disc does not feel pain, why can this condition be so painful? Well, unfortunately, the disc will tend to bulge where the nerves of the spine are located, which usually applies pressure to the nerves.
The nerves of the body are very sensitive, and any amount of pressure that is applied to them can not only cause severe pain, but also disability. You have to realize that the nerves control everything in the body.
So, for example, a C5 C6 disc that is herniated will affect the nerves that control the muscles in the shoulders, arms, hands, neck, as well as other areas of the body such as the head, eyes, ears, and thyroid gland.
Because of this, if there is any pressure applied to these nerves (whether it be from a herniated disc, or some other condition), it is very common that you will not only experience neck pain, but also symptoms related to these other areas.
For example, you may also experience arm pain, burning, numbness, weakness, headaches, thyroid problems, problems with your vision, ringing in the ears, etc.
So, now that we’ve established what a herniated disc is, and the types of symptoms you may experience from a C5 C6 disc that is herniated, let’s discuss the causes of the problem.
The most common cause of a herniated disc is trauma – some type of injury. Whether it be from a car accident, lifting something heavy, a sports-related injury, or some other type of trauma.
There is also a genetic component to this condition. If you have any other family members who suffer with spinal problems, it is possible for you to be born with weaker discs, which predisposes you to a disc herniation. This doesn’t mean that your stuck with the problem – it just means that you need to take extra steps to keep your spine strong if you have a family history of this.
So, what can you do about a C5 C6 disc that is herniated? Most doctors would recommend medications, physical therapy, pain injections (such as cortisone or epidurals), or even surgery. There are many things you can do at home as well. We’ll discuss just 3 things you can do from home for relief in this article.
First, if you’re actually experiencing pain, the best thing you can do from home is use ice over the painful area. It’s important to note that you have to use the ice over the disc in the neck, even if you feel pain elsewhere. You must treat the source of the pain in order for it to be alleviated.
So, how do you use the ice for the most effectiveness? Well, you want to use real ice, rather than a substitute (such as a gel ice pack, or frozen vegetables). Place the ice directly on the skin, and leave it on for 15 minutes maximum or until the area becomes numb (whichever comes first). Repeat this treatment every hour for best results.
Consistency is truly the key with ice – it will typically take 3 – 6 treatments before you will experience any relief. In most cases, if you are consistent with this treatment, you can expect to experience quite a bit of relief within 3 days.
The second thing that you want to keep in mind with a C5 C6 disc that is herniated is your sleeping position. It is very important that you are using the correct pillow so that you don’t make this condition worse over time.
I would recommend that you use only 1 pillow, and you especially want to be sure that you don’t stack pillows under your neck, which forces the neck into a flexed position. This position is very hard on a herniated disc, and will actually make your condition worse.
The 3rd tip I’ll give you today is that you bounce on a therapy ball at home. A therapy ball is one of those large balls you see at health clubs or in physical therapy clinics. You basically want to sit on the ball and gently bounce up and down.
Now, you’re probably wondering how that will help a disc problem in your neck. Well, remember how we discussed that the discs of the spine are made up of that hard outer covering, and jelly center? The jelly of the disc is very important, because this is where the nutritional and oxygen is stored in the discs, which is very important for the discs to heal properly.
The only way you can get new nutrition and oxygen into the discs of the spine is by physically pumping them, which is what this exercise will do for you. It doesn’t matter if your injured disc is in the neck or somewhere else in the spine – this exercise will effectively pump new oxygen and nutrition into the disc for faster healing.
If you would like more information about a C5 C6 disc that is herniated, you can visit my website, http://www.healyourbulgingdisc.com.