The terms herniated and bulging disc are often used to describe each other because they have similar causes and symptoms. However, since the conditions are not the same, knowing the difference between each will help you address the source of your back pain. The chiropractor at Gloekler Chiropractic in Ashtabula, OH, explains how to tell the difference between the two conditions.
What Is the Difference Between a Herniated & Bulging Disc?
1. Affected Area
A bulging disc will not always irritate the entire circumference of the disc. Instead, you might notice that only a quarter or half of the circumference is inflamed. A herniated disc involves a small crack in the outer layer of the disc. Once the soft, inner layer is exposed, this results in pain.
Pain intensity can differ between either of the conditions. A herniated disc is usually more painful because the nerves in that area are easily irritated. Meanwhile, it is not uncommon to experience a bulging disc without any kind of pain.
Since intense pain is more common with herniated discs, pain management is one of the recommended treatment methods. Physical therapy and targeted stretching are a few treatment methods commonly used to ease the condition. Since bulging discs don’t cause pain and discomfort at the same rate as herniated ones, you should continuously monitor the area for any changes before calling a chiropractor.
Understanding the differences between a herniated and bulging disc makes it easier to treat the issue. The experts at Gloekler Chiropractic offer treatment for herniated and bulging discs, sciatica, and back and neck pain. Servicing the Ashtabula area since 1981, they are known as the premier chiropractic center. If you’re interested in scheduling an upcoming consultation with a chiropractor, give them a call at (440) 992-3112, or visit their website to learn about their specialties.