Is Chiropractic Care For You?
April 2011 · Print This Article
Out of sight, out of mind. We tend to take our bones and joints for granted – that is, until something tweaks, pops, twists, jams or breaks. Sometimes the pain does not result from an injury, but from sitting or standing too long without the proper support or posture. When it hurts even to sit or stand, whom can you go to for help? One possibility might be a chiropractor, or “DC.” Chiropractors specialize in the musculoskeletal system. That is, our bones, muscles, ligaments and tendons and how they work together to keep our body mobile. Chiropractors have earned a pre-medical undergraduate degree and an additional degree after four to five years at chiropractic school.
Chiropractic adjustment aims to improve alignment, relieve joint or spinal pain, and increase the range of motion without surgery or the prescription of drugs. A conventional medical treatment, however, may accompany chiropractic treatment. Chiropractic has proven effective in the treatment of osteoarthritis and fibromyalgia.
The doctor applies a sudden, controlled force to the joint, moving it past the usual range of motion without hyper extending the joint. The patient may need one manual adjustment or use a series of manipulations. Treatment may also include massage or hot compresses. Ideally, chiropractic not only relieves pain and restores function, but also helps to prevent future injuries. Consequently, the patient will probably have to make four to six visits since most problems are ongoing and like any form of treatment, it will take time to improve the condition.
Like many medical treatments, chiropractics may be administered in conjunction with a nutritional and exercise plan to maintain a healthy musculoskeletal system. Of course, all treatment will be based on a medical history taken by the chiropractor. Although chiropractics can help with back, neck, and shoulder pain and headaches, if a patient has osteoporosis or inflammatory arthritis then chiropractics might not be an appropriate treatment.