Cervical compression, more popularly known as cervical spondylosis is a condition which occurs when the cervical vertebrae and spinal discs degenerate as a result of ageing and also due to injury.
The discs press against the nerves causing pain, tingling, abnormal reflexes, inflammation and difficulty in waking. The common treatment methods undertaken for cervical compression are surgery, alternative therapy, medications and steroid injections.
Cervical decompression too can be done in order to relieve the pressure on the nerves and the spinal cord. Decompression treatment most often helps in alleviating the symptoms and some people get complete relief from the condition through this method.
For mild cases of cervical spondylosis where only the nerve roots are compressed, the doctor may not prescribe surgery. A cervical collar will be used in such cases so that the neck movement can be limited and the nerve irritation reduced tremendously. The support on the neck will help the muscles to relax and ease the nerves. Muscle relaxants and NSAIDs (non steroidal anti inflammatory drugs) too may be prescribed in order to keep the symptoms under check.
Additionally, a cervical decompression therapy will be done which help in improving the posture of your neck, straighten the spine, improve muscle tone and release the pressure off the nerves. In the process, massage is done on the inflamed area and the nerves are stimulated through electrical intervention. Along with this, the doctor will also prescribe exercises that are specialised for decompression of nerves. To reduce the inflammation and the swelling on the neck, cold and hot packs are administered at regular intervals. This will remove the swelling and resultant pain associated with cervical spondylosis.
An important part of decompression therapy is walking exercise and stretching exercises. Walking helps in improving the muscle tone and blood circulation to the legs, back and hip area. It also helps in correcting postural deformities and stabilises and strengthens the spine and muscles that support the spine. At least 20-30 minutes of walking will provide a huge relief from the symptoms without the aid of medications.
Precautions And Will Motivation
For practicing cervical decompression therapy, you are advised to seek the services of a good physical therapist. He can chart out the best plan for your condition. Sticking to the exercises are important while you undergo decompression therapy. Only a combination of exercise, medications and use of external aids like collars can help gain the desired result while you are under treatment.
Some patients may not get relief from decompression therapy. In such cases, surgical intervention might be necessary to arrest the damage caused to the nerves and prevent further discomfort and pain due to cervical spondylosis. It is very important to talk to a doctor and get the surgery done as soon as possible in such a case for best results.
While the damage which is already caused cannot be removed, surgery can at least prevent further nerve compression and damage and ease the pain and tingling sensation on the legs and back to a great extent. A neck collar might also be necessary which can be used in the morning to prevent nerve compression.