Why do I wake up with neck or low back stiffness but it gets better as I move?
This symptom is a hallmark of spinal degeneration, spondylosis or wear and tear to the joints of the
spine. Think of the joints like hinges on a door. The way to keep the hinge from rusting is to keep it lubricated
or oiled. The joints are similar in that the need motion in order to keep them lubricated and healthy. Healthy
joints can typically go hours without needing much movement but when they are wearing down, after 6-9
hours of sleep or a few hours of sitting in the same position, degenerated joints can develop “rust”. We then
get up and get moving and the stiffness and discomfort improves. This is because you are oiling your rusty
What can you do for this? Depending on the severity of the degeneration you may be able to do most
things at home on your own. It is not possible to reverse degeneration once it reaches a certain stage.
Moderate to severe degeneration needs help to manage. The best way to manage usually involves helping the
joint get the lubrication it needs. With spinal manipulation and non-surgical decompression the joint is able to
reach optimum hydration bringing healthy fluids to affected areas. The end result is decreased stiffness and
irritation to spinal nerves and slowing of the degenerative process.
If you need help with determining if you have degeneration and/or what stage you may be in please click here.
Contact APC to learn more about how we can help the rusty hinges in your spine!
– Doctors and team of APC.