Bone spurs (osteophytes) are bony growths that form on the joints as a result of degenerative changes to the spine.
Many people think the spurs are the source of the pain. However, this cannot be further from the truth. The spurs indirectly cause severe pain when it decreases the spaces where the nerves pass through or rubs against the nearby nerves.
What are the causes for bone spurs?
Bone spurs are not a part of the normal aging process. But, the formation of bone spurs may be triggered by poor posture, traumatic injury, poor nutrition and misalignment in the spine.
Whenever a spinal segment is fixated (subluxated), the other spinal segments will have greater movements to compensate for the loss of motion from a fixation.
As shown in the picture above, with the fifth cervical (C5) restricted, other segments will become hypermobile through the same range of motion. Thus, in order to compensate for this extra movement, the body will start to form bone spurs on the surfaces of the joints to add stability to the spine.
How can chiropractic help bone spur?
The root cause of the formation of bone spurs in the spine is due to lack of movement. Each spinal segment should be able to move and function properly.
Through a full examination which includes visualizing, using instrumentation, palpating and analyzing your X-ray, the chiropractor can identify the problematic segment, adjust them and restore their normal movement. By restoring the proper motion of each spinal segment, better stability will be achieved and the bone spurs will no longer increase in size and number.