10 Things People Should Know About Chiropractic
1. Pain is the last symptom of dysfunction
A patient’s back is often restricted or unstable for months or years before it presents as a problem. In addition, the absence of pain is not health. While medication may be needed, if you take a pill and the pain goes away, the dysfunction that caused it still persists. Muscle, ligament and joint injuries often occur as a result of long-term biomechanical dysfunction, sometimes from past injuries, making the area more susceptible to future injury.
2. Athletes use chiropractors to stay well and perform better, not just for the occasional injuries.
Athletes choose chiropractors because we are movement specialists. Chiropractors are spotted at many sporting events such as: the Olympic games, MLB, NFL, and NBA etc. Top athletes such as Michael Jordan, Michael Phelps, and Tom Brady have all been proud patients of chiropractors. Theses days it’s far more common than not for major athletes and sports teams to keep chiropractors nearby to help prevent injuries, speed up recovery, improve balance and coordination, and give them a greater competitive edge.
3. The body does not perform as a cluster of separate mechanisms, but rather a cascade of events that all starts with proper control by the nervous system.
The nerves that travel through and control every function of your body originate at the spinal cord and their transmission may be disrupted if the joints of the surrounding spinal column are not moving properly. This disruption in biomechanical integrity combined with altered physiological function is what chiropractors call a subluxation. The nerves go to every organ, system, and tissue in the body. Chiropractors treat the body as a whole system, which has generated the best overall outcome for the patient.
4. Doctors don’t do the healing.
Chiropractors are able to restore proper motion in the joints, which relieves tension on the nerves and muscles and allows your body to heal. Your body is a perfect organism and any disruption in the body’s proper transmission of signals by the nerves will affect the body’s ability to heal and to defend against illness and/or injury. Chiropractors assess to find which spinal levels are causing the dysfunction and we adjust it to restore proper nerve flow so the nervous system may work as efficiently and effectively as possible.
5. Chiropractic is for all ages.
Many seniors are not aware of the benefits of chiropractic care, which can help them not only with pain relief, but also increase range of motion, balance, coordination, and decrease joint degeneration. Chiropractors have also checked infants moments after birth for misalignments of the upper vertebrae as a result of the birth process. In addition to supporting overall health and well being, parents also take their children to chiropractors to encourage healthy nervous system development.
6. We know about more than just your backbone!
Our level of knowledge is rather extensive. Chiropractors give advice on nutrition, fitness, ergonomics and lifestyle. We also screen for conditions unrelated to the musculoskeletal system and refer out to other practitioners when necessary. Chiropractors also complete specialties/residency in other areas such as pediatrics, sport medicine, neurology, radiology, and clinical nutrition just to name a few. Our training hours are similar to that of a medical doctor. Here is a review of the curricula for chiropractic school and medical school.http://omaleydc.files.wordpress.com/2013/02/dcmd.jpg
7. Successful chiropractic patients accept responsibility.
Although there are some cases with complicating factors, most chiropractic problems are very clear and the recovery process is a 2-way street between the chiropractor and the patient. It’s a team effort! For example, back pain doesn’t usually occur over night, therefore, it’s not going to go away over night. If a weak core from years of sitting at a desk is to blame for the additional stress on the joints, then an adjustment will provide relief. However, once the condition is no longer exacerbated, there is a home exercise program that is the patient’s responsibility.
8. Chiropractic may help you get sick less.
Research studies have indicated that adjustments consistently reduce the production of pro-inflammatory mediators associated with tissue damage and pain. The adjustment may also enhance the production of immunoregulatory complexes important for a healthy immune system defense.
9. “I heard I’d have to go forever.”
You may want to go to your chiropractor forever once you have started because you didn’t realize how great you feel after an adjustment. Generally though, once you have been treated for your initial complaint, you will be scheduled for a few follow-up appointments to make sure proper motion is being maintained. Then it is recommended you return occasionally for check ups, similar to going to the dentist or having your car serviced. There are physical, chemical, and emotional stress that takes place on the body daily, so many people choose to see their chiropractor weekly or monthly for wellness or maintenance care.
10. Adjustments don’t hurt.
The adjustment some chiropractors use causes anticipation for many new patients, but is actually much more gentle than they imagined. It involves a quick, direct thrust to a specific joint. The “popping” or “cracking” sound an adjustment makes is called a cavitation. This sound occurs when space is being created within the joint causing gasses to be released from the joint capsule. Chiropractic adjustments will not wear out your joints. They are applied specifically to improve the motion of your joints and limit the small dysfunctions that over time can lead to arthritis. It is very common to feel “lighter” or to be able to move your body with greater ease after an adjustment.
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