Every year, more than 30 million Americans see Doctors of Chiropractic as part of the regular health care programs and with over 84,000 licensed Doctors of Chiropractic nationwide and more than 10,000 students currently enrolled in Chiropractic schools, it is the fastest growing health care profession.
What is Chiropractic?
Chiropractic is a health care profession that focuses on disorders of the musculoskeletal system, the nervous system, and the effects of these disorders on general health. Chiropractic care is used most often to treat neuromusculoskeletal complaints, including but not limited to back pain, neck pain, joint pain, spinal disc conditions, carpal tunnel syndrome, tendonitis, sprains/strains and help patients with osteoarthritis.
Doctors of Chiropractic practice a drug-free, hands-on approach to health care that includes patient examination, diagnosis and treatment. These doctors have broad diagnostic skills and are also trained to recommend therapeutic and rehabilitative exercises as well as to provide nutritional, dietary and lifestyle counseling.
The most common therapeutic procedure performed by Doctors of Chiropractic is known as “spinal manipulation,” also called “Chiropractic adjustment.” The purpose of manipulation is to restore joint mobility by manually applying a controlled force into joints that have become hypomobile – or restricted in their movement – as a result of a tissue injury.
Tissue injury can be caused by a single traumatic event, such as improper lifting of a heavy object, or through repetitive stresses, such as sitting in an awkward position with poor spinal posture for an extended period of time. In either case, injured tissues undergo physical and chemical changes that can cause inflammation, pain, and diminished function for the sufferer.
Manipulation, or adjustment of the affected joint and tissues, restores mobility, thereby alleviating pain and muscle tightness, and allowing tissues to heal.
In many cases, such as lower back pain, Chiropractic care may be the primary method of treatment. When other medical conditions exist, Chiropractic care may complement or support medical treatment by relieving the musculoskeletal aspects associated with the condition.
Doctors of Chiropractic may assess patients through clinical examination, laboratory testing, diagnostic imaging and other diagnostic interventions to determine when Chiropractic treatment is appropriate or when it is not appropriate . Doctors of Chiropractic will readily refer patients to the appropriate health care provider when Chiropractic care is not suitable for the patient’s condition, or the condition warrants co-management in conjunction with other members of the health care team.
How does it work?
Chiropractic is based on the idea of removing imbalances both structural and postural in an effort to allow our body to healitself. For this to happen the network of nerves and signals from your brain, down your spinal cord, to the network of nerves must be allowed to flow freely without any interruption. Chiropractors have the ability and skill to remove these interruptions or misalignments and allow the body to perform as it was meant to.
If you've ever been in a car accident, played a sport, fell down or just bumped into something too hard, it's very possible that you are not functioning at your best due to a misalignment. While there are many potential mechanical or structural causes for misalignment, there are also chemical reasons. For instance, if you smoke or drink excessively or even just have a poor diet, the chemical issues in your body can eventually cause underlying conditions and disease to appear.
Allowing a chiropractor to get you back on track both chemically and structurally will bring your body back to the proper state it should be in to perform at its peak.