It’s likely you know at least one or two people who make regular visits to a chiropractor, and it’s also likely these people swear by the benefits of chiropractic care. So, what is chiropractic care all about? And, more importantly, is it right for you? Here are chiropractic care basics to help answer your questions:
Who gets chiropractic care?
Anyone may go to a chiropractor for treatment, regardless of age, and for a wide variety of reasons. People with back pain often seek the treatment of a chiropractor, but so do people with carpal tunnel syndrome, headaches, frozen shoulder (shoulder impingement), sciatica, tendonitis, and many other common ailments. If you think chiropractic care might be a good solution for you, then it never hurts to schedule a consultation.
What can you expect at the chiropractic office?
Many chiropractic sessions include an adjustment (spinal manipulation) of the vertebrae. This is where the chiropractor works the muscles around the spinal column, as well as the adjusting of your back and joints, in order to reintroduce proper motion to those areas, relieving pain and pressure in the process. It is not unusual to experience some soreness after the adjustment, which will subside with time. Additionally, many chiropractors offer extra therapeutic services in their office for the treatment of back discomfort and stiffness. These include Active Release Therapy (ART) and electrical muscle stimulation (EMS).
Many of our patients come in for Active Release only for muscle, tendon, or ligament issues; and do not require any spinal manipulation!
How does chiropractic care work?
When the chiropractor adjusts your spine, the goal is to free up the motion of the joints, and provide ample space in between your vertebrae for optimal nerve conduction. By alleviating the pressure on your spinal cord, often caused by swelling and/or bulging or herniated discs, the nerves are able to communicate effectively with the rest of the body resulting in relief from many symptoms/conditions.
As you can see, there are many reasons to visit a chiropractor, and many benefits to be had from chiropractic care. Consider these chiropractic care basics to determine if seeing a chiropractor is right for you.
The prospect of seeing a chiropractor for the first time can cause some apprehension, to say the least. However, that is usually only due to unfamiliarity with the functions of a chiropractor and the techniques a chiropractor uses to treat patients. Fortunately, chiropractic care is nothing to be scared of, and it could likely be just what you need to experience relief from your condition. Spinal manipulation, also called chiropractic adjustment, is a mystery to people who have never been to a chiropractor. But, being as how chiropractic adjustment is the cornerstone of chiropractic care, it is important that you understand what it means if you plan on seeing a chiropractor any time soon. Here are the basics of chiropractic adjustments:
What does chiropractic adjustment involve?
During a chiropractic adjustment, the chiropractor will manipulate the joints in your spine, forcing them through their natural range of motion, until they “fall” into their natural position, often called “alignment.” The release of pressure and the restoration of proper motion is the goal of spinal manipulation, and is what often makes that “popping sound” that most people are familiar with once the goal is achieved.
Dr. Studley also provides light force techniques such as Thompson Drop and Activator at your request, which do not cause the “popping” of the joints.
What techniques are used during chiropractic adjustments?
Chiropractic adjustments involves a series of manual manipulations, most of which are used to apply pressure to areas around the spine where the vertebrae are not moving properly. Different chiropractors use different methods to accomplish this. Some use a soft, gentle touch, while others prefer using sporadic pressure and sudden movements to achieve the desired relocation. Before you choose a chiropractor, it is imperative that you ask about the techniques that will be used during the adjustment and pick a practitioner whose treatment style matches your preferences.
How does chiropractic adjustment work?
Once the joints in the spinal column and/or extremities have been properly adjusted, the motion of the joints is restored in a way that provides for optimal space in between them, which in turn reduces pain, swelling, and pain/discomfort. There are also large nerves in disc joints, and when the joints are cramped (often due to swelling and/or bulging or herniated discs), those nerves are compressed. Compressed nerves become irritated and cannot communicate with the nervous system the way they need to, resulting in pain and discomfort (numbness, tingling, shooting pain, sciatica). By restoring motion through the chiropractic adjustment, the chiropractor lessons the pressure on the spinal cord nerves, in turn alleviating a variety of symptoms and conditions.
As you can see, there is a lot more to spinal adjustment than a few simple twists and turns of the back. Chiropractic care is a specialized field that makes use of its very own techniques. Chances are your health could benefit from these techniques in more ways than one.
Dr. Chip C. Studley, D.C., ART
Sports Injury and Auto Accident Specialist