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Are You at Risk for a Herniated Disc?

herniated disc risks

One of the most common spine conditions, a herniated disc, refers to when a spinal disc is damaged and the disc’s inner material bulges out aggravating surrounding nerves. Also known as a slipped, bulging or ruptured disc, the pain from herniated discs can occur suddenly in the lower back and neck and affects a wide range of the population. Are you at risk for a herniated disc?

Keep reading to find out causes, risk factors, and symptoms of this prevalent spine condition.

Who is Most at Risk

Herniated discs often develop without warning, but knowing the causes and risk factors can raise awareness for your potential likelihood of experiencing the unpleasant phenomenon:

  • Age: Individuals between 35 and 50 years old have the highest chances of developing the condition due to general wear and tear on the spine over time.
  • Gender: Men are nearly twice as likely as women to experience a herniated disc.
  • Physical Activity: Jobs and activities that strain the spine with heavy lifting, repetitive twisting, or other strenuous movements can increase the chance of experiencing the condition.
  • Injury: Whether due to work conditions, sports activity, or spontaneous accident, trauma to the neck or back can cause discs to herniate.
  • Obesity: Excessive weight puts added stress and pressure on the spine increasing the chances of experience single or even multiple disc herniations.
  • Smoking: By limiting blood flow, smoking can slow down and decrease chances of healing from herniated discs.
  • Genetics: Family history of developing herniated discs can impact your chances of experiencing the condition, many studies have found.

Understanding the variety of factors that can play into your chances of developing a herniated disc is a key step in proactive diagnosis and treatment for the condition.


What Are the Symptoms

Just as important as knowing the risk factors for disc herniation, knowing the symptoms of the condition are crucial to quick identification. The sooner your doctor can diagnose your pain, the sooner you can find the right treatment plan. Common symptoms of a herniated disc include:

  • Lower back pain
  • Sciatica
  • Leg pain
  • Nerve pain (sharp, acute, isolated pain)
  • Numbness or tingling
  • Pain that worsens with movement

While these symptoms can be attributed to different conditions or ailments, getting the proper evaluation and diagnosis from your doctor is critical to relieving your pain and discomfort, especially if a herniated disc is to blame.



At Q Spine Institute, we understand your lifestyle and make it our top priority to give our patients the best care possible and return their quality of life to them. If you or a loved one are experiencing leg or back pain, please contact the Q Spine team at (732) 660-8942 or request a free phone consultation today.


Topics: Back Pain Herniated Disc Lower Back Pain Sciatica Spine Condition