What is a Bone Spur?
Commonly called a bone spur, an osteophyte starts when arthritis, bone misalignment, aging or wear erodes joint cartilage until bone rubs on bone, causing inflammation. The body then deposits calcium salts in that area and grows new bone in an attempt to become stronger. This buildup can make the situation worse by continuing further degeneration, irritating a nerve root and restricting normal movement. In people with arthritis, for example, bone spurs develop in the joint or disc spaces, where cartilage has begun to break down or deteriorate. Bone spurs sometimes block the spaces where nerve roots leave the spinal canal.
Bone Spur Pain
Many of us can develop bone spurs in one part of our body or another, and not even know they exist. Some of us, however, are not so fortunate. Osteophytes can cause pain in the neck and back, as well as radiating type pains through the extremities such as the arms and legs. Bone spurs in the spine can be particularly painful. One area where bone spurs seem to be prevalent is in the disc spaces between vertebrae. As the discs and their attached ligaments begin to wear down, the body begins to thicken the ligaments. Over time, the ligaments can calcify and shed small fragments. The presence of this additional material in the spine can cause compression and pain.
Natural Chiropractic Bone Spur Treatment
Our approach to bone spur treatment is to restore the curve and flexibility of the spine or joint. When the underlying problem in the spine or joint is fixed, usually the body will absorb the bone spur. Our patients usually experience a relief in discomfort simply by improving the mobility of the spine or joint and soft tissues with chiropractic adjustments and laser therapy.
Bone Spur Prevention
Someone who visits a chiropractor regularly to maintain spinal health is much less likely to develop bone spurs. One of the most common conditions leading to bone spurs is osteoarthritis. If the changes that lead to arthritis are reversed early enough, you can prevent it from becoming a progressive disease. Dietary changes may be recommended, as well as nutritional changes to maintain a good balance of calcium and magnesium. If you are suffering from bone spurs, call our office today for a free consultation to find out how Dr. Winchell can help your specific case.