Herniated discs can happen over time or very suddenly. When a disc herniates quickly, it’s usually because of an excessive strain or severe injury. However, the gradual herniation of discs due to degenerative disc disease is more common.

Degenerative disc disease occurs when your discs get weaker over time due to age-related changes in their structure. With degenerative disc disease, a minor strain or movement can cause a disc to herniate. You might even get multiple herniated discs at one time.