Many of us suffer from neck pain at some point in our lives. One of the common causes of neck pain and stiffness is Spondylosis (also known as degenerative disc disease).
Cervical spondylosis is the end result of either age-related or traumatic degenerative (‘wear and tear’) changes of joints in the spine that may disturb the mechanics of the spine. With degeneration of the joints, we see on X-Rays extra bone formation (such as bony spurs), a decrease in the disc height between the vertebrae (as the discs dry out and shrink) and a narrowing of the vertebral canal. The extra bone formation in the joints is caused by instability, and is a natural process of repair to adapt to the stresses and strains of normal life.
To determine whether you have spondylosis you will need to consult a primary health care provider such as a Chiropractor, physiotherapist, osteopath or general practitioner. Your therapist will take a medical history from you and will undertake a thorough examination to determine if you have spondylosis. If indicated, further imaging may be necessary, such as an X-Ray or MRI scan. The next step would then be to develop a treatment plan to improve your symptoms and joint mechanics by improving spinal motion and reducing inflammation.