Cervical osteochondrosis is a disease that is rapidly getting younger. If earlier it occurred mainly after 40 years, now people aged 25-26 years are at risk.
Symptoms of cervical osteochondrosis in women are more pronounced than in men. This is due to the structural features of the body. In the stronger sex, this part of the body is better developed, which supports the entire vertebral structure, preventing its deformation and overload.
Types of osteochondrosis and the dangers that the disease carries
There are various types of osteochondrosis, which differ in the degree of danger of the consequences.
- Thoracic. It is considered the safest type of disease. This type of osteochondrosis almost never leads to such unpleasant consequences as protrusions or hernias. This is explained by the low mobility of the thoracic region. Due to this, its deformation does not cause severe discomfort to the patient.
- Lumbar. It occurs most often due to the high mobility of this part of the body. In addition, it is on the vertebral section that the main load falls. Without timely treatment, this disease can have serious complications: disc herniation and protrusion, as well as radicular syndrome, which is often the main cause of paralysis. The main danger of this type of osteochondrosis is a late manifestation, which is why time for intensive treatment is often missed.
- Cervical. It occurs predominantly in the female half. This prevalence is associated with a high activity of the cervical spine, the presence in this part of the body of a considerable number of nerve fibers that serve as a conductor between the brain and other organs. The consequences of osteochondrosis of the cervical spine are the most serious - from dangerous complications to death. That is why the treatment of this disease must be timely and effective.
Factors affecting the development of the disease
Scientists identify many reasons that lead to the appearance of osteochondrosis in women. The main one is the menopause and the changes that occur at this stage. The volume of progesterone entering the body, which is extremely important for women, decreases. In addition, over the years, the size of the muscles in this area of the body decreases, which leads to a weakening of the support of the spine.
There are also other causes of osteochondrosis in women that are not related to age:
- circulatory failures;
- weakening of the immune system;
- hormonal imbalance;
- any injury to the spine;
- excessive physical activity;
- passive lifestyle;
- excess weight.
Such a number of disease-causing factors contributes to the rapid increase in the number of women suffering from cervical osteochondrosis.
Signs of illness
In order not to miss the onset of the development of the disease, you should know the main symptoms of osteochondrosis in women:
- pain in the cervical region;
- recurring headaches;
- feeling of stiffness in the neck area;
- shooting pains radiating to the cervical region;
- discomfort of the fingers and shoulder;
- feeling of numbness of the limbs or tongue;
- sudden onset of snoring during sleep.
Depending on the level of sensitivity of the body, other signs of cervical osteochondrosis in women may also appear:
- nausea, sometimes leading to vomiting;
- a sharp increase or decrease in pressure;
- bluish skin tone.
It is important to consider that these signs of osteochondrosis are quite serious, although at first glance they are not associated with the development of the disease. That is why if you have these symptoms, you should immediately contact a specialist to exclude the development of the disease.
Due to the fact that the discs of this spine are located close enough to each other and do not differ in high height, the symptoms of cervicothoracic osteochondrosis in women can be determined already at the initial stage of the disease.
The deterioration in general well-being is explained by the fact that the deformation of the intervertebral discs causes immediate pressure on the roots of the fibers of the nerve endings. It depends on the degree of their defeat, how painful the sensations will be, how long the attack can last.
- If the pain is of a short-term nature, which is replaced by a short rest, these are backaches.
- If you feel aching pain, you will need to take non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs.
- The headache is due to excessive pressure on the occipital nerve, as well as on the vertebrae of the highest row.
- Unpleasant sensations in the hands, elbows and forearm are characteristic of the deformation of the middle vertebral region.
Also, the patient may feel weakness of the hands and loss of skin sensitivity. This happens when the spinal cord is compressed. This symptom is typical for women after 40 years. They also often feel a lack of energy when walking.
If the disease is not treated on time, it can give the following complications:
- squeezing of blood vessels in the brain;
- problems in the functioning of the central nervous system, characterized by disorders of behavior, coordination, speech;
- violation of the process of blood circulation in the brain.
In the latter case, accompanying symptoms may occur, such as:
- causeless anxiety and fear;
- a sharp deterioration in memory;
- frequent mood swings.
Also, disruptions in the blood circulation of the brain can cause sudden loss of consciousness, regular headaches and feelings of dizziness. All these problems are quite serious and require immediate hospitalization. Also, cervical osteochondrosis can cause difficulty in swallowing, problems with hearing and vision, as well as a feeling of regular tinnitus.
Principles of therapy
The treatment of this disease is complex. Various forms of therapy are used at different stages of the development of the disease.
- At the initial stage, vasodilating drugs are highly effective. They contribute to normal blood circulation in the brain. Cartilage tissue is restored with the help of chondroprotectors.
- Manual treatment has a high level of effectiveness. A specialist with good experience will easily return the vertebrae to their place.
- Physiotherapy is another effective treatment option. It consists of a massage course, laser therapy and electrophoresis.
- Acupuncture is very popular among women. This method has a high percentage of effectiveness with a low rate of pain.
- Sports activities are of great importance in proper treatment. Depending on the type of disease and its severity, the specialist prescribes a complex of physiotherapy exercises or a charging scheme for the cervical region.
- Of particular importance is a change in lifestyle. Starting to exercise and eat right, you will significantly speed up the recovery process. It is very important to provide the body with the intake of useful and nutritious substances in sufficient quantities.
It is believed that women are more attentive to their health, which means that the disease is diagnosed at an early stage, which increases the chances of a full recovery.
Folk recipes are highly effective in the treatment of this disease.
- Fresh horseradish leaves should be carefully washed and applied to the cervical region. It is necessary to fix the compress with a soft bandage and leave it overnight. As a rule, by the morning there is a significant improvement in the condition. To consolidate the effect, the procedure should be repeated for at least 3 days in a row.
- Potatoes need to be peeled and grated on the fine side of the grater. Add a little honey to the resulting mass and mix thoroughly. You will get a mushy remedy that should be applied to a sore spot. You can make such a compress no more than once a week.
Such methods will alleviate your condition without the use of drugs. In addition, it is extremely useful to perform special therapeutic exercises. It will noticeably strengthen the muscles, due to which the mobility of the spinal region will return. When choosing exercises, you should take into account the level of your physical fitness and general health. To get the effect, gymnastics should be performed regularly.
Given the mass prevalence of the disease, special attention should be paid to the prevention of osteochondrosis. First of all, you need to reconsider your lifestyle. If you spend most of your time in a sitting position, this needs to be corrected. There are special exercises for office workers that are performed right at the table during work. With high efficiency, they do not require much time or special conditions for training.
In addition, you need to walk a lot. If there is no free time, try to overcome on foot any part of the road to work. The more you increase it, the more noticeable your efforts will be.
It is also useful to periodically undergo a preventive course of massage. In addition to general strengthening of the body, this will allow you to capture the disease at the very beginning and receive effective treatment.
Thus, every woman needs to carefully monitor her health and, at the slightest sign of the development of osteochondrosis, immediately take therapeutic measures. If done in a timely manner, you can achieve a complete recovery without any complications.