Extension of the spine: It is good. It
So what is up with extension for the spine?
Both are true: It’s valuable. It is harmful. It’s the job of your Toronto chiropractor to help you figure
out the role of extension in your Toronto
back pain relief plan and Toronto back pain control plan in the future.
Your Toronto chiropractor at Yorkville Chiropractic and Wellness Centre is well experienced
in the effects – good and bad – of spinal extension and respects its role in spinal
health and mobility.
Two of the spine’s most prominent curves –
the cervical and lumbar curves – are lordotic curves meaning they curve concavely.
Flexion flattens these curves. Extension magnifies them. When a disc herniates
or bulges, it does so into the concavity of the curve and potentially pushes
on the spinal nerves resulting in pain. Flexion usually
permits the disc bulge to move off of the
nerve. Extension often allows the disc bulge to press on
the nerves more. Yorkville Chiropractic and Wellness Centre wants to help reduce
painful situations like this!
75% of the flexion and extension movement in the low back happens
at the L5-S1 level of the lumbar spine. 20% occurs at the
L4-L5 level. Therefore, 95% of flexion and extension of the lumbar spine happens
at these two lower disc levels. Here, degenerative disc disease (minor and more
advanced) happens most. In the cervical spine, C5-C6 is the spinal
level where most of the flexion takes place, and C4-C5 is where
most of the extension occurs. Toronto chiropractic
patients need healthy extension!
Yorkville Chiropractic and Wellness Centre respects extension and understands
how it may benefit and hurt. The extensor muscles in the
back weaken and degenerate just as discs degenerate. (1)
Extension helps strengthen these muscles to support the spine. Extension is necessary
for this when the spine is healthy enough to do extension. Extension to a painful spine may be
harmful. Why? In the cervical spine, flexion decreased disc
protrusion and enlarges the sagittal diameter of the vertebral
canal while extension increased the disc protrusion and narrowed the vertebral canal producing
stenosis. (2) In a degenerative lumbar spine with spinal stenosis, flexion opened
the vertebral canal and relieved pain while extension exacerbated
the stenosis and caused pain. (3) Yorkville Chiropractic and Wellness Centre understands
the key to getting the benefits of extension is in recognizing
when to apply extension.
Toronto CHIROPRACTIC USE OF EXTENSION
Toronto chiropractic treatment incorporates
extension into the Toronto chiropractic treatment plan for its benefits.
Cox® Technic used with the cervical spine reduced
intradiscal pressures to as low as 502 mmHg (4) and to as low as -192 mmHg in
the lumbar spine. (5) Extension increased pressures in the lumbar
spine to 1250 mmHg (the most the transducer could measure).
(4) Dropping intradiscal pressures and back pain is what
Yorkville Chiropractic and Wellness Centre does for its Toronto back pain
CONTACT Yorkville Chiropractic and Wellness Centre
Listen to this PODCAST with Dr. David Atiyeh on the Back
Doctor’s Podcast with Dr. Michael Johnson. He shares how he helped
a patient whose back pain continues after multiple back
surgeries with flexion distraction which gives her relief
as the table is flexed not extended.
Schedule your Toronto chiropractic appointment
with Yorkville Chiropractic and Wellness Centre today. Let’s discover
the role extension might play in your back pain recovery and future
back pain control plan.