With approximately 35 million adults and children using chiropractic care each year, there’s something to be said about this form of medical treatment. Some people believe chiropractic care is limited to simply having your back cracked but in reality, there is so much more to this method of medical treatment.
Chiropractors can treat a long list of symptoms and ailments, some completely unrelated to back pain. Here you’ll discover exactly what a chiropractor is, the types of conditions they treat, and how it’s done.
What Does a Chiropractor Do?
A chiropractor’s practice is based on the theory that proper alignment of the body’s musculoskeletal system can help patients heal without the need for surgery or medication. This belief is primary based on the alignment of a person’s spine. This alignment is achieved through manual manipulation and other treatments including heat and using electric stimulation to loosen tight muscles and allow for manipulation to be performed more easily and achieve optimum results.
Chiropractors treat individuals of all ages from infants up to elderly men and women. Athletes often seek chiropractic care for sports related injuries, preventive care, and as part of the physical therapy process. Even expectant mothers can see chiropractors who believe that to be in optimal health, the spine and nervous system must be working together in perfect alignment and harmony.
Some people seek chiropractic care for chronic conditions, excessive and repetitive use of certain limbs and areas of the body, or spinal damage. Sometimes these conditions worsen with age. If this is the case, some people ask why a small child would need to see a chiropractor. When an infant comes into this world, a lot of strain and pressure is placed on the spine through the birthing canal. We already know that toddlers and small children are active and accident prone. This means lots of tumbles and falls. Some young children suffer what’s known as a vertebral subluxation which makes it difficult for the body to keep organs and other important systems working together at optimal function. Chiropractic care in children is also said to improve digestive help, strengthen the immune system, and support healthy growth and development.
Conditions Chiropractors Treat
But even if you don’t introduce chiropractic care at a young age, there are a long list of things that you may need treatment for alter in life and it’s not designated just to neck and back pain or even injury. Chiropractors can actually treat things such as headaches, joint pain in the arms and legs, asthma, and infertility.
Let’s take a closer look at the types of relief chiropractors offer.
Given the fact that chiropractors specialize in spinal alignment, back pain and how it relates to the nervous system, it’s no big surprise that back and neck pain are the most common causes for adjustments. This pain can range from muscle tightness or stiffness to a misalignment of the surrounding bones, which causes pressure and tension on the nerves. Sometimes, neck pain is actually permeating from the shoulder area, which is something your chiropractor will determine when examining you and asking questions related to your discomfort.
Chiropractors are trained to feel the misalignment through manual touch and use a variety of techniques to put things back where they belong. This helps ease the pain and discomfort patients feel. This is why, most times, the chiropractor will “pop” or “crack” certain parts of the body in an effort to realign what has become misaligned.
Did you know that the nerves located in your abdominal area and chest are actually linked to your digestive system? This means that when things are misaligned in this area of your body, it can affect the surrounding nerves, and in turn, negative affect your digestion. The most common cause of this type of misalignment is a thoracic disc herniation which effects an area between the spinal bones and can lead to irritable bowel syndrome, or IBS. Other complications when things like the thoracic vertebrae are misaligned include heartburn, gas, and bloating. By keeping things aligned in the chest and abdominal areas of the body, you are promoting healthier gut health overall. This alignment is achieved through chiropractic care.
There are 150 different types of headaches and thousands of causes. Whether you suffer from migraines, tension headaches, or a sinus headache, visiting a chiropractor might actually offer relief. This is because most headaches are actually caused, at least in part, by neck and upper back pain. Sometimes headaches are also the side effect of an underlying condition in these areas due to toxins. A chiropractor can determine this through a manual examination and use both further manipulation and massage to help loosen the tight muscles that may be causing your headaches.
Lower Blood Pressure
Believe it or not, research shows that chiropractic care may actually help to reduce high blood pressure in sufferers. Of course, you should consult with your doctor before seeing a chiropractor for this reason and it should be done in conjunction with your regular treatment methods and medications. But some studies have reported a significant drop in a person’s blood pressure after only one visit to the chiropractor.
Pregnant ladies feel all sorts of aches and pains during their pregnancy, including back pain and sciatica trouble and a misalignment of the pelvic bone is usually to blame. Unfortunately for many pregnant women, their options for pain management are pretty slim. Which is what makes seeing a chiropractor and/or getting a massage the primary ways pregnant women find relief for their discomfort. Chiropractors can use a variety of manipulation tactics for pregnant patients but one of the most common is known as the Webster Technique which assists with proper pelvic alignment.
A Variety of Benefits
As you can see, seeing a chiropractor offers a host of benefits for patients of all ages and conditions. If you’re still unsure of whether or not visiting a chiropractor will help your current condition, consult your primary care physician. Most chiropractors will start out slowly and explain every step of the manipulation process to new patients. You’ll be surprised at the pain relief you’ll feel once your spine and nervous system are in harmony.
Article Submitted By Community Writer