All About The Spinal Cord

Definition

The spinal cord is one of the most important parts of our body. Just like with our other body parts, the spinal cord is made up of different sections and has a crucial role in our day-to-day lives.

In this article, we will discuss the spinal cord in detail, what it’s composed of and how it's structured, as well as it functions in the human body.

What is the Spinal Cord?

The spinal cord is a tube-like structure that starts from the base of the brain down to the backbone. It’s made up of nerves and is one of the main parts of the central nervous system. The spinal cord is a crucial structure that links the brain to the rest of the body and vice versa.

Structure of the Spinal Cord

The spinal cord is located within the spinal canal which is called the "vertebral foramen," or the vertebral canal. This vertebral canal is sandwiched between your intervertebral body of the backbone at the front and the spinous process at the back.

The spinal cord itself has a defensive myelin sheath that operates as insulation for specific nerves which boosts nerve efficiency so brain signals can travel faster. Other materials of the spinal cord include white subject matter that consists of nerve fibres encircling grey matter.

The vertebral body is the top, round part of a bone in leading part of the backbone, as the intervertebral drive is the level of cartilage between each vertebral body that provides the back a way of measuring overall flexibility and support. The spinous process is the backside of the backbone that leads to a pointed end.

Spinal Cord

A human spine is split into five major parts, with each section having vertebral nerves running right through multiple vertebrae (apart from the coccygeal vertebra, which only has one). These different sections are:

  1. The Cervical Spine - This section is located in the neck area.
  2. The Thoracic Spine - This section is located in the upper back area.
  3. The Lumbar Spine - This section is located in the lower back area.
  4. The Sacral Spine - This section is located just below the lower back near the tailbone area.
  5. The Coccygeal Spine - This section is located in the tailbone area which is at the bottom of the spine.

Remember that these sections are just the basics. The spine and the spinal cord is made up of many materials and their structure is much more complex.

Functions of the Spinal Cord

As stated earlier, the spinal cord plays an important role in our lives and how we go about doing our different tasks. To further elaborate, here are the main functions of the spinal cord:

  1. Electrical communication. Electric currents travel along the spinal cord, sending impulses which allow different sections of your body to talk to the brain.
  2. Walking. While a person walks, an assortment of muscles in the lower limbs are constantly contracting. The action of taking step after step may seem to be incredibly easy to us since we've been doing it our lives, but there are a great deal of factors that need to cooperate with one another to permit doing this motion. This central structure generators in the spinal cord are made of neurons which send alerts to the muscles in the hip and legs, making them either extend or contract, and produce the alternating moves which occur whenever a person walks.
  3. Reflexes. Reflexes are involuntary actions and reactions caused by stimuli relating to the brain, spinal cord, and nerves of the peripheral anxious system.

 

Spinal Nerves

Spinal nerves give us a method of communication between your spinal cord and all of those other body parts. A nerve is a cordlike body organ consisting of several axons that are connected together. The amount of axons (also called nerve fibres) in a nerve may differ anywhere from simply a couple of fibres to greater than a million. Nerves generally have a pearly white shade and can appear to be frayed string as they get increasingly more divided. You will find 31 pairs of vertebral nerves in total.

Spinal Cord Injuries

Spinal nerves give a method of communication between your spinal cord and all of those other body. A nerve is a cordlike body organ consisting of several axons that are destined together. The amount of axons (also called nerve fibres) in a nerve may differ anywhere from simply a couple of fibres to greater than a million. Nerves generally have a pearly white shade and can appear to be frayed string as they get increasingly more divided. You will find 31 pairs of vertebral nerves completely:

There are various ways that a spinal cord injury may appear. The most frequent factors behind SCI predicated on data from 30,500 spinal cord injuries documented in 2014 by the Country wide Spinal Cord Personal injury Statistical Middle at the School of Alabama-Birmingham include:

  1. Auto Accidents
  2. Falls
  3. Gunshot Wounds
  4. Diving Accidents
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Questions & Answers
Q:
What is the best way to treat permanent back and neck pain and stiffness?
A:

Here are some tips:

Neck Pain Tips: Sleep with a cervical pillow

Orthopedic or cervical pillows are made with special contours to support the space beneath the neck and head. They are also more concave for the head and provide more support to the neck.

Neck Pain Tips: Sleep on your back

The best position to lie to sleep is on your back. If you sleep on your stomach or on your side, make sure your pillow is not too thick. It should raise your head no more than 4 to 6 inches. This will keep your neck and head from turning to either side.

Neck Pain Tips: Position your computer screen at eye level

While you are working at a computer, sit comfortably in your chair with your computer in front of you. Close your eyes and then open them. When you open your eyes, you should see the middle of the computer screen. If your gaze is not in the middle of the screen, adjust the height of the screen using items like books.

To keep your head from gradually drifting forward, take frequent breaks to stretch. Getting up to walk around at least once every half-hour is one of the best neck pain tips.

Neck Pain Tips: Use a telephone headset

Never hold a phone between your shoulder and your ear. Use a headset or other hands-free system to talk on the phone and avoid abusing your neck and spine.

Neck Pain Tips: Exercise your neck muscles

One of the best neck pain tips is using the chin tuck. You can do this often throughout the day. In addition to helping strengthen the muscles that hold the head in alignment over the shoulders, it also helps strengthen the scalene and sub-occipital muscles.

Read more tips here: Neck Pain Tips: Sleeping, Posture, Exercising, Hydration & Prevention

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Temed Holdings
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Q:
What is the best treatment for neck pain and shoulder Pain?
A:

One of the best treatment for neck pain and shoulder pain is exercises:

Neck Pain Exercises: Neck Extension

  1. To begin this neck pain exercise, sit up straight in a chair with your feet flat on the floor.
  2. Looking straight ahead, tuck your chin slightly (starting position)
  3. Place the palm of your hand on the back of your neck, at the base of your head
  4. Apply slight forward pressure with your hand, while resisting the forward motion of your neck and head
  5. Hold for a count of 5 and return to the starting position and relax
  6. Repeat the neck pain exercises 5-10 times

Neck pain exercises: Side bend

  1. Sit up straight in a chair with your feet flat on the floor.
  2. Looking straight ahead, tuck your chin slightly (starting position)
  3. Place your left hand, palm down, on the left side of your head (around your ear)
  4. Slightly push your head to the right side with your hand, while resisting the sideways motion of your neck and head
  5. Hold for a count of 5 and return to the starting position and relax.
  6. Repeat 5-10 times
  7. Repeat the neck pain exercises with the other side.

Neck pain exercises: Neck flexion

  1. Sit up straight in a chair with your feet flat on the floor.
  2. Looking straight ahead, tuck your chin slightly (starting position)
  3. Place the tips of your fingers on your forehead
  4. Slightly push your head backward with your fingers, while resisting the backward motion of your neck and head
  5. Hold for a count of 5 and return to the starting position and relax.
  6. Repeat the neck pain exercises 5-10 times

More exercises here: Neck Pain Exercises

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Temed Holdings
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Q:
How do I reduce the shoulder and neck pain?
A:

Here are some tips:

Neck Pain Tips: Sleep with a cervical pillow

Orthopedic or cervical pillows are made with special contours to support the space beneath the neck and head. They are also more concave for the head and provide more support to the neck.

Neck Pain Tips: Sleep on your back

The best position to lie to sleep is on your back. If you sleep on your stomach or on your side, make sure your pillow is not too thick. It should raise your head no more than 4 to 6 inches. This will keep your neck and head from turning to either side.

Neck Pain Tips: Position your computer screen at eye level

While you are working at a computer, sit comfortably in your chair with your computer in front of you. Close your eyes and then open them. When you open your eyes, you should see the middle of the computer screen. If your gaze is not in the middle of the screen, adjust the height of the screen using items like books.

To keep your head from gradually drifting forward, take frequent breaks to stretch. Getting up to walk around at least once every half-hour is one of the best neck pain tips.

Neck Pain Tips: Carry weight evenly

Many people make the mistake of carrying a heavy briefcase or their purse on their shoulder or on one side of their body. Doing this causes strain in the muscles and leads to pain.

Remove non-essentials from your briefcase or purse. Consider using a backpack to evenly distribute the weight across your shoulders. If you choose to carry a purse or backpack, keep your shoulders level while carrying it.

Neck Pain Tips: Maintain a proper posture

The most common posture contributing to neck pain is the “head-and-shoulders-forward” posture. In this position, the neck slopes forward, putting the head in front of the shoulders.

In this position, the head pulls the upper back forward also in a slumped position. This places a strain on the entire spinal column.

More tips here: Neck Pain Tips: Sleeping, Posture, Exercising, Hydration & Prevention

Read more
Temed Holdings
4 answers