Common Causes of Herniated Discs: Degeneration & Injury

3 Most Common Causes of Herniated Discs

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A herniated disc can be extremely painful and ultimately debilitating, preventing you from living a normal life day-to-day when seeking out treatment.

While there are many causes of a herniated disc, it mostly boils down to three common causes, of which if we are aware of we can make better choices to help us avoid such complications later in life.

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Cause #1 – Degeneration

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As we age, our body experiences stresses of all sorts: physical, emotional and chemical, which can have a small and gradual affect on our general health and well being. The symptom of pain that many people experience leading up to herniation of a spinal disc and afterwards can be contributed to such degeneration.

Our backs help us to carry and distribute our weight, and our spinal discs are there to absorb forces from movements that we make daily. These movements could include walking, running, twisting and bending to name a few, and more stress intensive movements like those that athletes experience will create more wear and tear on the spinal discs when compared to people who don’t compete in sports.

Degeneration will eventually weaken the tough outer layer of the spinal disc (annulus fibrous), allowing the jelly-like inner layer (nucleus puplosus) to protrude and create a herniated or bulging disc.

Cause #2 – Injury

An injury can also be a cause of a bulging or herniated disc. A few examples of occurrences that commonly result in an injury:

  • Car accidents
  • Sports injuries
  • Slips and trips

The sudden force – or jerk movement – on the spinal disc can put too much pressure on it, resulting in herniation. People using improper lifting methods in the gym is another one of the most common causes of a bulging disc.

Injury can bring on sudden pain and be completely debilitating. Learn more about Chiropractic & Back Pain Treatments in Calgary.

Cause #3 – Degeneration + Injury

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Sometimes degeneration results in injury, or vice versa, where someone will become injured and never fully recover, resulting in degeneration that’s fastened because of that injury.

For example, a weakened intervertebral disc that has been weakened by years of performing a labour-intensive job day in and day out may make it more prone to herniation. Then, a traumatic event happens where the disc is pushed over its stress threshold and herniates.

On the other hand, a sports injury could result in a bulging disc and result in a degenerative pattern if not treated properly by a healthcare practitioner.

Most often a herniated disc is the result of both injury and degeneration in some combination or another, which is why it’s essential to seek effective disc rehabilitation treatments before it’s too late.

Herniated Disc Treatment at Revelation Health Centre

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At our northwest chiropractic clinic, we treat herniated discs using a well-documented and proven form of spinal decompression and disc rehabilitation called the Cox® Technique.

This method is a non-surgical, hands-on, chiropractor-controlled approach that uses a flexion-distraction technique to decompress the spinal column and relieve pain, helping patients recover from injury and slow degenerative patterns to a standstill.


Of the 80 percent of low back and neck herniation patients with and without sciatic pain who undertook treatment using decompression therapy, 63 percent showed a decrease in the size of the herniation and bulge. (Eliyahu, JMPT, vol 9, no. 19)

Learn more about our herniated disc rehabilitation:

Book Your Herniated Disc Rehabilitation Appointment

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Call us anytime at 403-284-2082 or message us below and we will book you in at your earliest convenience. See Revelation Health Centre’s Office Hours, Location and Contact information here.

We are looking forward to helping you accomplish your personal health goals!