Cervical spondylosis belongs to the category of degenerative disease, which affects your spine and neck. Under normal conditions, soft disks present the vertebrae and the spine bones provide cushioning. However, when a person suffers from cervical spondylosis, the disks become compressed.
Whenever this condition takes place, the cartilage responsible for lining the vertebrae on each of the disc’ side may wear away. Once the protective cartilage wears away, bone spurs develop on the vertebrae whether they rub at the same time.
Nerves remain attached to the spinal cord have a relatively less room for passing between the vertebrae on the way out from the spine. The condition of cervical spondylosis becomes common with the increase in age. Hence, even though you do not have any symptoms, you should stay aware of certain changes going on in your spine and neck.(1)
What Leads To Cervical Spondylosis?
As a person becomes old, his/her cartilage and bones, which constitute the neck and backbone wear and tear gradually. This results in certain changes, which include-
Dehydrated Disks: Disks perform their functions as cushions between the spinal vertebrae. When you reach 40, your spinal disks may start drying out and shrink to allow a relatively high amount of bone-on-bone type of contact between your vertebrae.
Bone Spurs: Disk degeneration may force your spine to produce additional bones in a misguided type of effort to enhance the spine’s strength. These bone spurs may sometimes pinch your nerve roots and the spinal cord.
Herniated Disks: Aging may even affect the exterior areas of your spinal disks. Cracks often take place resulting in herniated or bulging disks, which sometimes press over the nerve roots and the spinal cord.
Stiff Ligaments: Ligaments refer to the cords of various tissues, which set up connections among the bones. Spinal ligaments may become stiff with the increase of age. The stiffness reduces the flexibility of the neck of a patient.(2)
Risk Factors Related to Cervical Spondylosis:
Aging: Aging is a prime factor related to the development of cervical spondylosis. In many people exceeding 50years of age, the discs present between different vertebrae become relatively less spongy and give lesser cushion. Besides, ligaments and bones in cervical spondylosis patients become thick to encroach over the spinal canal space.
Previous Injury: The previous injury to the spine or neck area may sometimes result in cervical spondylosis.
Occupation-Related Risks: Individuals involved in specific activities or occupations, like athletic games and gymnasts may put an excessive amount of stress on the necks. Thus, these people remain at high risk to suffer from cervical spondylosis.
Poor Posture: Poor posture has a prime contribution to the development of certain spinal changes, which lead to cervical spondylosis.(3)
Can Cervical Spondylosis Be Cured?
Until now, experts have not found any specific treatment procedure to cure the condition of cervical spondylosis completely. The reason for this is that spondylosis is one of the degenerative procedures. Instead, the treatment options intend to manage your underlying condition. Accordingly, cervical spondylosis targets to manage your neck pain and back pain. In simple words, the treatment-related to cervical spondylosis is almost similar to the treatment options available for neck pain and back pain. Treatments are thus available under different categories, which include the following-
- Physical Therapy
- Neck and Back Exercises
- Adjunctive therapies, like acupuncture and chiropractics
- Minimally invasive procedures, like surgery and injections.(4)
Cervical spondylosis may take place because of wear and tear of the neck as well as backbone due to herniated disks, dehydrated disks, stiff ligaments, and bone spurs. Besides, you will find many risk factors to trigger the problem, especially the age of an individual. Moreover, cervical spondylosis condition is incurable; however, you may manage your symptoms by following certain treatment procedures and instructions from your doctor.