I was researching arthritis and found a simple explanation on an orthopedic surgeon’s website. It’s caused by normal wear and tear, apparently. They were referring specifically to osteoarthritis, which is the abnormal bone growth and spurring that causes motion restriction and nerve damage. As a chiropractor, I’ve seen a lot of X-rays. When there’s evidence of spinal osteoarthritis, it’s almost always in one of two places: the base of the neck (spinal segments C5-7) and base of the low back (L4-S1). These two spots are predictably where people have surgeries and fusions, which are rather pricey and time-consuming. Now why is it that there are dozens of healthy spinal segments and only a handful of degenerated segments? They are all the same age. Isn’t gravity pretty much a constant force on us, unless we spend a lot of time on roller coasters? But osteoarthritis predictably affects the same parts of the spine.
If you knew how to prevent osteoarthritis, would that help you age better? Note that you don’t want to age “normally” anymore, you want to age as best as you can! Check this out: your low back and the base of your neck are vulnerable points in the spine. An accumulation of physical and emotional stresses causes these body parts to malfunction and wear out more quickly. For example, car accidents, hockey, and football make people susceptible to osteoarthritis and accelerated aging. But there is a solution to this problem. If you choose regular chiropractic care to keep your spine and nervous system healthy, you can decrease the likelihood that you will age with “normal wear and tear.” So avoid being diagnosed with a chronic, degenerative condition like:
- Degenerative disc disease
- Degenerative joint disease
- Sciatica, radiculopathy, myelopathy, and all the other terms for “my body is literally getting on my own nerves”
If you ignore your body, it will predictably decline faster than necessary. If you take care of your body better than you do your car (yes, better!), your body will predictably age slower than everyone around you. Don’t be normal, be better than average!