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5 Long-Term Effects of Herniated Disc in the Neck

It’s common for people to complain about neck pain without realizing what the real cause is. If you feel radiating pain in your neck, shoulder pain, and numbness or tingling in your arms and hand, it may be because you have a herniated or slipped disc in your neck.

But what exactly is this condition? Here’s everything you need to know about a herniated disc in the neck, including its complications, along with some tips to prevent it.

What is a Herniated Disc: Symptoms & Risk Factors

A herniated disc in the neck occurs when the gel-like center of the disc in your neck is ruptured through a tear in the disc wall. You’ll feel radiating pain in your neck, shoulder, and upper arms when this happens. You may also feel numbness or tingling in your hands.

This condition may be caused by an injury to the spine or repetitive strenuous activities. Natural wear and tear and aging may also make you prone to a herniated or protruding disc. 

As you age, you’re prone to straining your body due to sudden movements or lifting heavy objects as your muscles become less flexible, which could then lead to a ruptured disc.

Below are other risk factors for a herniated disc in the neck:

  • Excess body weight
  • Genetics
  • Smoking
  • Frequent driving
  • Sedentary lifestyle

Here are the common signs to watch out for in case you suspect that you may have a herniated disc in your neck:

  • Sharp pain
  • Numbness
  • Tingling or burning sensation
  • Muscle weakness

How to Prevent a Herniated Disc in Your Neck

Here are several easy ways to prevent hurting your neck:

  • Improve your posture. The therapists at LifeClinic can help fix poor posture and suggest lifestyle changes to maintain proper form.
  • Exercise regularly, but don’t strain yourself. It’s best to consult a physician or follow a trainer-approved resistance training plan to keep proper form when exercising or moving about to ensure you’re not exerting yourself too much. 
  • Stretch often to strengthen your neck and back muscles. Taking short breaks at work to stretch your body is a great way to fit this into your daily routine.
  • Maintain a balanced diet to keep a healthy weight. 
  • Use proper lifting techniques. Avoid bending at the waist with your knees straight.
  • Quit smoking. 

Long-term Effects of Herniated Disc in the Neck

A ruptured disc in the neck can lead to permanent nerve damage if left untreated. In the case of a rupture or disc misalignment, the pain may extend to other areas, including your extremities.

Below are the long-term effects of a herniated disc in the neck:

Chronic Pain

If you fail to properly address the issue of a ruptured disc in your neck, you may experience extreme pain in your cervical spine that can last for as long as you don’t undergo proper treatment.

Neurological Issues

Extended numbness in your body parts can reduce your ability to feel sensations there because of the compressed nerve. Eventually, you may lose feeling in your arm or shoulder due to the herniated disc in your neck. 

You may also develop abnormal reflexes, and your brain’s ability to transmit impulses to your arms, hands, and shoulders may be compromised. 

Limited Mobility 

A herniated disc in your neck may also result in limited mobility, particularly in your upper body. You’ll feel stiffness in your neck and difficulty moving your hands, arms, and shoulders. 

It may also be difficult to grasp or lift objects, making certain daily tasks difficult, like turning a doorknob or typing on a keyboard.

Limb Weakness 

A compressed nerve from a herniated disc in the neck may reduce sensation in your arm, thus leading to limb weakness and loss of motor functioning. You may observe this in your hands and wrists, making everyday tasks challenging, like writing or gripping objects.


A group of nerves called the cervical plexus runs from your head to your neck. These nerves regulate pain and transmit pain symptoms in your head. 

When these nerves become irritated by a herniated disc, you may experience headaches that won’t go away until you treat the herniated disc in your neck.

Seek the Help of a Chiropractor at LifeClinic

One way to relieve pain and provide comfort when you’re suffering from a herniated disc in the neck is to undergo chiropractic therapy, an effective non-surgical treatment for a herniated disc in the neck

After the initial evaluation, your chiropractor will perform spinal manipulation and make the necessary adjustments combined with other types of therapeutic techniques to help with your condition.

Furthermore, they may suggest lifestyle modifications and at-home exercises to help relieve pain and maintain a healthy lifestyle to prevent further injury. 

Consult a chiropractor at LifeClinic today to receive a proper evaluation and treatment options for a herniated disc in your neck. You may also visit our website to check out our services and locations.

Dr. Reza Alizadeh

Dr. Reza is the visionary behind LifeClinic. His leadership is the foundation for the patient and team member experience, and overall direction of the LifeClinic. As the creator of IMJT, Dr. Reza continues to be the primary teacher on this technique.

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