Different risk factors that may accelerate the occurrence degenerative disc disease are:
• Hobbies or occupations which require heavy lifting or repetitive motion
• Genetic Predisposition
• Weight Gain
Although some degeneration is expected with age, but not all degeneration is symptomatic. Some people feel no pain, while many others with the same amount of disc damage experience severe pain that even limits their activities.
Where the pain occurs generally depends on the location of the affected disc. A degenerative disc in the cervical spine may cause neck or arm pain, while a degenerative disc in the lumbar spine may cause pain in the legs, back or buttocks. The pain gets worse with the movements such as lifting, bending or twisting.
Degenerative Disc in the Neck
Discs in the cervical spine commonly protect cervical bones through providing cushion and absorbing shock. Healthy cervical discs on the other hand provide structural height and flexibility between vertebral bone to prevent friction, which may lead to pain and other related structural problems. When these discs start degenerating and breaking down with time, they often lose their natural disc height, shrink and even bulge or tear. This phenomenon, which is natural as we age, is called degenerative disc disease.