How many times have you heard of people who felt just fine and then they had a sudden heart attack or found out they had cancer? Or they woke up and could not move due to low back or spinal pain? It might actually have something to do with their nerves, their nervous system that is.
Nerves are like electrical cords that carry information from the brain to the rest of the body and vice-versa. They are distributed throughout the entire body.
• Motor (efferent) nerves carry information from the brain out to the body. This allows the brain to send commands to the various organs of the body. For example, these commands are sent to the muscles causing them to contract and move, or sends information to the heart to either beat faster or slower.
• Sensory (afferent) nerves send information from the body back to the brain for processing, including information about pain, touch, taste, temperature, or other sensations.
When a nerve is pinched, the signal is interrupted somewhere along its path. A pinched nerve in the spine occurs when one of the delicate spinal nerves is compressed by nearby structures, such as a herniated disc, a bone spur, muscles or other soft tissues. The spinal cord travels through the bony structure of the spine, and spinal nerves branch off the cord at each vertebral level. These nerves carry information to and from the periphery of the body. According to the Mayo Clinic, any pressure on a nerve causes inflammation and irritation, leading to a variety of symptoms. If the pressure is relieved, proper nerve function can return, but if pressure is allowed to continue, irreversible damage may occur.
Pain does not necessarily accompany all pinched nerves, but it is common. Numbness, or decreased sensation in the area that the pinched nerve supplies, is one of the most common symptoms encountered. Each muscle and organ in the body is activated by a nerve or set of nerves. When the nerve supply is compressed, information is not able to travel appropriately, and the result is muscle weakness, associated spasms, dysfunction or disease.
Dr. Henry Winsor, M.D. was intrigued by patients who returned to health using chiropractic or osteopathic spinal care. The University of Pennsylvania gave Dr. Winsor permission to carry out his experiments to see if there was a relationship between any diseased internal organs discovered on autopsy and the vertebrae associated with the nerves that went to the organs. As he wrote, in a series of three studies, he dissected a total of seventy-five human and twenty-two cat cadavers. The results, of the 221 diseased organs examined, 212 were observed to belong to the same sympathetic nerve segments as the vertebrae in curvature. These figures cannot be expected to exactly coincide, for an organ may receive sympathetic filaments from several spinal segments. In other words, Dr. Winsor found a nearly 100 percent correlation between “minor curvatures” of the spine and disease of the internal organs. Some of the diseases and related spinal or vertebral segments he found are the heart, lung, stomach, liver, pancreas, spleen, kidney, prostate and bladder disease, gallstones and uterine conditions.
The point: take your health seriously and keep a watchful eye on your spine, before bigger problems arise!
For more info, contact Dr. Tony Jensen at (775) 323-1222.