Your cervical spine is made up of seven bones, known as cervical vertebrae, stacked on top of each other forming the neck area. The cervical discs are the cushions that lie between the cervical vertebrae and act as shock absorbers to allow your neck to move freely.
Your cervical spine also forms a protective tunnel for the upper part of your spinal cord to pass through. This part of your spinal cord contains the spinal nerves that supply your upper body with sensation and movement.
Loss of space between your cervical vertebrae from cervical disc degeneration, or wear and tear, is common. When the space between your vertebrae becomes too narrow, part of your vertebrae or your cervical disc can press on your spinal cord or spinal nerves, causing you pain, numbness, or weakness. Cervical discs begin to collapse and bulge with age and can cause you pain, numbness, or weakness. When these symptoms do not respond to nonsurgical types of treatment, disc surgery may be recommended.