Gonstead Chiropractic Technique Explained

July 2008 · Print This Article

Imagine the irony of attempting to correct problems of the musculoskeletal system without trying to identify the source of the problem. In many cases that is how injuries and pain are treated. Pain is treated with medicine that numb the body’s senses and surgery is performed before the root of the problem is identified.

On the other hand, chiropractors who practice using the Gonstead Technique address the whole problem, rather than only treating symptoms or making adjustments that only represent short-term solutions. The Gonstead Technique not only relies on the expert hands of trained chiropractors to help patients, but also helps the body heal without the use of expensive equipment, painful surgery or medications that may result in side-effects.

The practice of Gonstead Chiropractor was developed by Dr. Clarence S. Gonstead (1898-1978). According to a 2003 ranking by the National Board of Chiropractic Examiners, the Gonstead Technique is the fifth most popular treatment among chiropractors, with just over half (57.2%) of chiropractors using the treatment.

Here is how the Gonstead Technique works. Chiropractors gather a clear understanding of spinal misalignments in each patient using a serious of tests and evaluations. Since the human body is unique and never exactly the same between two people, every patient will have a different set of misalignments. The chiropractor will determine which alignments to correct first and which to address later. They will deliver a very specific adjustment to correct the problem at its source. Correcting the wrong misalignment can cause the spine to compensate in other areas and create other problems.

A Gonstead Chiropractor will adjust the neck with the patient sitting upright as opposed to lying down. A Gonstead chiropractor will also use their hands to perform the adjustment as opposed to an instrument called an activator.

This technique is so and effective that the first Gonstead clinic in Wisconsin would see hundreds of patients a day. The reputation of this clinic spread world wide and today the clinic is over 22,000 square feet with a waiting room to seat 100 people. Not all chiropractors offer the Gonstead Technique because of the time needed to master — and subsequently demonstrate — competency in the method. Yet, as already noted, a study found that more than half of chiropractors believe in the Gonstead Technique.

The GCSS is also charged with validating the technique through continued research and data collection.

The Gonstead Method differs from other approaches by chiropractors because if offers a thorough analysis of a patient’s spine that encompasses five areas:

  • Visualization, which cross reference all findings in a patient’s posture and movement which could indicate problems
  • Instrumentation through the use of the Nervoscope, a device which detects uneven distributions of heat along the spine which alerts chiropractors to inflammation and nerve pressure
  • Static Palpation, a feeling of the spine that detects problems
  • Motion Palpation – This also involves feeling the spine as it moves in different directions
  • X-Ray Analysis

For more information about the Gonstead Technique, talk to our Fremont chiropractors. Discover Chiropractic is located in Fremont, Ca and Union City, Ca.

Discover Chiropractic (510)797-4796


One Response to “Gonstead Chiropractic Technique Explained”

  1. michael spiegel on February 25th, 2012 1:46 pm

    how do you treat benign vertigo.

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