Most often people associate going to a chiropractor for the treatment of low back and neck pain. Although chiropractors do effectively treat pain in the neck and low back, they also address your health through a preventative-holistic model. Your treatment from the chiropractor will often include manual therapy, exercise, diet and other healthy lifestyle modifications to keep you strong and functioning at your optimal levels.
Pain is only a small fraction of the big picture and is the body's natural defence mechanism to alert the brain about a deeper problem occurring somewhere else in the body. Pain does not necessarily tell you what or where the problem is, it only tells you there is a problem hence, using a pain-based model is not an accurate measure of health. The job of the chiropractor is to find the root cause of what is eliciting the pain and address the problem by altering or eliminating the pain mechanism.
How do chiropractors find the root cause of your problem?
Through the process of history taking and a physical examination, a chiropractic doctor will gather clinical information about a patient's presenting symptom(s) with the end goal of formulating a diagnosis. The diagnosis will provide the clinician with a big picture of the patient's general health and presenting complaint(s).
The identification of a spinal joint dysfunction or vertebral subluxation is one of the chiropractor's primary goals. A spinal subluxation is a misalignment of the vertebrae in your spine which leads to altered tissue, abnormal motion, compensation, pain, and poor nerve function.
Pain and dysfunction(s) arise in the body when these subluxations are present. They result in a less efficient nervous system, causing a diminished immune response which can lead to an increased likelihood of getting sick or worse, disease. Think of your nervous system or nerves as a water-hose; water/ electrical flow is best when the hose (nerve) has no impedance. Contrary, when a kink (vertebral subluxation) is present, the flow becomes weakened and compromised.
The central nervous system is the most important domain to a healthy functioning body. Your nervous system is composed of your brain and spinal cord and has influence on most bodily functions, such as awareness, motor movement, sensation, organ function, speech, and memory. It is important to have free-flowing communication between these structures and nerves in order to have a strong-responsive body.
By finding and addressing these spinal subluxations, chiropractors invariably improve nervous system function via an adjustment. A decrease in pain is a direct result from a better functioning nervous system.
Chiropractic treatments are guided by simple rules of science, whereby an external stimulus from a chiropractic adjustment will cause an internal response and reorganization of bodily systems. This reorganization is a direct result of neurological input to the central nervous system which promotes adaptive change and restoration in health. Chiropractor's do not 'fix' the spine, rather we provide the stimulus that your body needs in order to facilitate its own healing process.
Some Benefits of chiropractic and spinal manipulation include,
~ increased mobility
~ improved immune function
~ increased energy and vigour
~ decreased pain
~ greater mind-body connection
~ increased proprioception and awareness
~ reduced pressure off nerves to promote enhanced nerve conduction
~ reduced stress and enhanced relaxation
~ quicker recovery time
~ increased circulation and nutrient supply
~ improved sleep
Ideally establishing a preventative and proactive lifestyle before pain arises, is the course one should strive for. Take an active approach to your health and book your spinal check up.
By: Albert Huang, DC
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