Osteochondrosis is a process of degeneration, aging, degradation of cartilage tissue and its transformation into a kind of bone.To understand the problem of osteochondrosis, it is necessary to imagine the structure of the spine: it consists of 35 vertebrae, which are placed one on top of the other in a column, forming a spinal column. Between the vertebrae there are "pads": cartilaginous discs (they act as shock absorbers and lubricants when the vertebrae move), the discs consist of a rigid, multi-layered ring and a liquid gelatinous core in the center.
Symptoms of cervical osteochondrosis:
Everyone knows that the spine becomes thinner in structure closer to the head. The upper vertebrae that make up the cervical region are long, refined, but very strong and mobile. However, its strength is not unlimited, especially when the daily stress on the neck exceeds the norm. The main causes of osteochondrosis of the cervical spine are always hidden in these loads.
The way in which osteochondrosis of the cervical spine manifests itself also depends on the type of load and the place of damage to the vertebral discs: each nerve root is responsible for a particular function, therefore, the manifestations of osteochondrosis of the neck are so diverse. The development of the disease occurs in 4 stages. Each subsequent one is more difficult than the previous one.
Stage 1 cervical osteochondrosis:
How can you protect our spine from overuse and destructive physical activity (or inactivity)?
First of all, discomfort: stretching, tingling, shooting - these are all the first signs of any disease of the spine.
Intervertebral osteochondrosis of the cervical spine begins with a feeling of tension in the neck muscles, their fatigue. The patient may feel a slight, cracking pain when turning and tilting the head. Very often, that discomfort is perceived as "probably icy" or "I'm tired of something. "
Remember! Pain is a signal, we can say the signaling of our body, if it worked, it is not only that. Pain cannot be ignored or numbed with pills!
The patient already feels more severe pain when turning and tilting the head. Sometimes the pain radiates (spreads) to the right or left arm, the shoulder joint, and sometimes the hand.
On the part of the nervous system, there are still rare headaches, fatigue, fatigue, a state of distraction (the initial symptoms of cervical osteochondrosis in women are very similar to the cyclical symptoms of the reproductive system: headache, dizziness, feeling weakness, fatigue).
Even if the signs of osteochondrosis of the cervical spine have already become obvious, in the second stage there are still all possibilities to prevent the development of the disease and the occurrence of complications. It is especially important to prevent the development of hernias, which in the cervical spine can be dangerous with loss of mobility and impaired blood supply to the brain.
At the third stage, the disease can already be considered neglected, because the treatment of osteochondrosis of the cervical spine at this stage is already much more difficult, and the destruction is often irreversible. Pain increases as intervertebral hernias begin to appear.
Constant weakness and dizziness, due to pinching of the nerves and large vessels that feed the cerebral cortex, are also intensified. Pain is often transmitted to the hands. The innervation of the muscles of the upper extremities is disturbed, as a result of which they weaken. Numbness and tingling in the hands is a common symptom of third degree degenerative disc disease of the neck.
The intervertebral discs have already been significantly destroyed and have undergone major changes, the hernias and bulges of each of them have a significant impact on the well-being of the patient. In place of the destroyed discs, connective tissue appears, depriving the spine of flexibility.
Compression of nerves and blood vessels leads to poor coordination. Pain, drowsiness, lethargy, and dizziness get worse. To these are added the ringing in the ears. There is a great risk of diseases that can be caused by osteochondrosis:
- When a vertebral artery is compressed by a hernia, it leads to cerebral ischemia and develops into a spinal effusion;
- Pinching of blood vessels can lead to malnutrition in the cortex or lower parts of the brain. As a result: altered perception, loss of consciousness;
- Compression of the spinal cord can even be fatal.