The word “chiropractic” comes from the Greek words cheir (hand) and praxis (action) and literally means “done by hand.” Instead of prescribing pharmaceutical drugs or recommending sometimes unnecessary surgeries, chiropractors utilize manual treatments of the spine and joints with exercise therapy, massage, trigger point therapy, while promoting lifestyle changes to facilitate the body’s natural optimal state of health.
Much like conventional medicine, chiropractic care is based upon scientific principles of diagnosis, through testing and empirical observations. Treatment is based upon the practitioner’s rigorous training and clinical experience. Unlike conventional medicine, however,which focuses on attempting to treat disease as a reactive measure once it has already occurred, chiropractic care attempts to improve the health of the individual, in an effort to avoid illness, as a preventive method of treatment. Most people would rather opt for exceptional health and avoid illness, if the option was in their own discretion. The presence and uprising of preventive wellness has significantly increased in recent years, with the popularity of chiropractic care also increasing substantially. People are now recognizing the benefits of seeking alternatives to traditional medicine, methods of treatment that will assist in achieving and maintaining optimal health.
Chiropractors maintain a comprehensive understanding, that one of the leading factors of pain and disease proves to be the misalignment and abnormal motion of the vertebrae within the spinal column, referred to as a subluxation. Chiropractic care works by removing these subluxations in the spine, alleviating pressure and irritation on the nerves, restoring joint mobility, and returning the body back to a state of fully functional capabilities.
Numerous studies have demonstrated that chiropractic care is one of the most effective treatments for back pain, neck pain, headaches, whiplash, sports injuries, and many other types of musculoskeletal problems. It has also been proven incredibly effective in reducing high blood pressure, decreasing the frequency of childhood ear infections, as well as improving the symptoms of asthma.
The chiropractic approach to healthcare is holistic, addressing overall health. It recognizes that many lifestyle factors such as exercise, diet, rest, and the surrounding environment profoundly impact your health. It is for this reason, chiropractors highly recommend adaptive changes in lifestyle, including but not limited to sound nutritional habits, exercise, and restful sleeping habits, in addition to chiropractic care.
What truly differentiates doctors of chiropractic care from any other healthcare professionals is the extensive training provided to their scope of practice, to diagnose and treat spinal subluxations. The word ‘subluxation’ comes from the Latin words meaning ‘to dislocate’ (luxare) and ‘somewhat or slightly’ (sub). So the term ‘vertebral subluxation’ literally means a slight dislocation (misalignment) of the bones in the spine. Although this term was adequate in the 1800’s, when the intricacies of the human body were often misunderstood, today the word ‘subluxation’ has been amended in meaning to capture the complex of neurological, structural, and functional changes that occur when a bone is ‘out of place.’ For this reason chiropractors generally refer to subluxations of the spine as the “Vertebral Subluxation Complex”, or “VSC” for short.
Chiropractors have been aware of the dangers of the vertebral subluxation complex ever since the birth of the profession. The substantial amount of scientific research demonstrates the tremendous detrimental impact that subluxation may have on the tissues within the body. In order to encompass the true value of overall health, it is essential that the nervous system function free of interference from subluxations. Chiropractors are the only health professionals trained precisely in the detection, location, and correction of the vertebral subluxation complex through chiropractic care.
The chiropractic adjustment is a quick thrust applied to a vertebra for the purpose of correcting its position, movement, or both aspects. Adjustments are often accompanied by an audible release of pressure that sounds like a ‘crack.’ The abrupt sound may cause disbelief for initial visits of adjustment, but the sensation proves to be relieving. Occasionally, minor discomfort may be experienced, especially if the surrounding muscles are in spasm or the tension of muscles increases during the chiropractic procedure. There are times when the audible ‘cracking’ does not occur. This may be the case in the scenario of significant muscle tightness or a patient’s inability to fully relax during their adjustments.
Chiropractic care provides much more than simply a means of relieving pain. Ultimately, the goal of the chiropractic treatment is to restore the body to its natural state of optimal health. In order to accomplish this feat, a variety of treatment methods is utilized, including manual adjustments, massage, trigger point therapy, nutrition, exercise rehabilitation, massage, as well as counseling on lifestyle issues that impact overall health. Since the body has a remarkable ability to heal itself internally, the primary focus is simply to remove the factors which interfere with the body’s functional healing abilities.