Dear Skeptical Human:
Sandwiched in between your vertebrae (the stacking bones that build your spine), your intervertebral discs are round cushions that absorb the shock of each step you take.
Often likened to a jelly doughnut, an intervertebral disc consists of two layers: an inner gelatinous mass (the nucleus pulposus) and an outer fibrous casing (the annulus fibrosus).
Made mostly of water, the nucleus pulposus acts as the spine’s built-in hydraulic system; the annulus fibrosus adds stability with concentric layers of sturdy fibers. Both parts of the disc also provide an axis of rotation about which you can twist (to go the direction you want in life!).
Over time, discs lose their cushioning qualities. This is a natural part of the aging process, which may cause back problems some individuals, and zero problems in others. Go figure!
If you are struggling with back pain or have a diagnosis of a disc herniation, a Vori Health care team member can get you on the right track. Schedule a visit to learn about our personalized approach.