Let’s talk about chiropractic care!
What is it exactly? The most straight forward answer is it relieves nerve pressure caused by subluxations (misalignments of the spine). Most people would only think to go to a chiropractor if something traumatic happened, such as a back injury at work, a car accident, or a major migraine that will not subside. However, it offers a lot more than just relieving pain. Chiropractic care can help everyone from all walks of life to live happy, energetic, and vital lives!
A lot of times chiropractic and chiropractors are treated like the ugly duckling of the medical community, and it’s sad that most of the time they are a last resort when truly it should have been the first choice. What chiropractors do is very simple: they adjust the spine to relieve pressure that subluxations place on nerves and surrounding tissue. By doing this, it unleashes the nervous system and allows the body to use its own innate intelligence to heal and function. Many times it’s explained simply as “turning on the power.” When a subluxation happens, whether it be from chemical sources, day to day posture, or traumatic injury, it places pressure on the spinal cord and surrounding nerves that branch off from that area. If it’s left there, not only are those specific nerve functions dramatically decreased (it only takes pressure the equivalent of the weight of a dime to reduce nerve function by 40-60%), but also the surrounding tissue gets inflamed. Leave it there even longer and your body will begin to lay down bony spurs to protect that area from moving further. So when someone begins to see a chiropractor for the first time and keeps going on a regular basis, they are amazed by the ‘magical’ things that begin to happen to their body. All by simply, turning on the power. So here are five things you may not have known about chiropractic!
1. You don’t always feel a subluxation.
Did you know that only 10% of your nervous system perceives pain? The other 90% has important information to send back and forth to your brain. It does have an entire body to run after all! This means something rather dangerous for people who have subluxations: you can have them without even realizing it. Of course this also means that by the time you actually do feel pain from a subluxation, it has often been there for many years and the damage has gotten pretty severe. So it’s fairly risky to think that you don’t need to get your spine checked just because you aren’t feeling any pain. A simple spine screening with a chiropractor can help catch these subluxations earlier rather than later!
2. Chiropractic boosts your immune system!
Remember earlier how we were talking about your nervous systems function being decreased by a subluxation? Well a lot of your immune system is controlled by your nervous system at the top of your neck and in your mid-back (think right around your shoulder blades). If there are subluxations there, then your immune system isn’t functioning at 100%. It’s like a plant that needs water but the irrigation hose has a kink in it, so only a trickle of water is getting through. So if you feel like you tend to get sick a lot, just going to see a chiropractor on a regular basis can help give your immune system a big boost!
3. Chiropractic significantly improves your mental health.
There has been some new research that some mental illnesses can be caused or worsened by chronic inflammation. Because receiving chiropractic care has been proven to reduce inflammation in the body, this means that seeing a chiropractor on a regular basis could help you not only feel better physically, but emotionally as well! In fact, in 2010, a case study was published about a 49 year old female who had a history of depression. They collected data throughout the duration of her chiropractic care and it showed significant improvement in her physical, mental, and social well being! This meant that as they corrected her vertebral subluxations, it greatly improved her quality of life naturally without any medications.
4. Chiropractic can help with digestive issues.
Today there seems to be a growing number of people struggling with digestive problems. Frequently people get diagnosed with broad terms such as IBS (irritable bowel syndrome), with no foreseeable cause or aid to help alleviate it. Many chiropractic patients have noticed significant improvement in their digestive problems, like IBS, after seeing a chiropractor for several months. This is simply because there are many nerves that branch out from the mid and lower back that play a very important role in transmitting information for your digestive tract. If there are subluxations there, then your digestive tract just isn’t running at 100%. If you suffer from digestive problems, make sure you get a screening with a chiropractor to make sure the problem isn’t simply subluxations in your back inhibiting the nerve flow!
5. Kids benefit from Chiropractic, too!
Most people don’t realize that we actually experience our first subluxations at birth!
Giving birth is pretty traumatic on the both the mother’s body and the child’s. So afterwards, it’s the perfect time to get checked out! Think about how hard a doctor pulls on a baby’s delicate neck, even during a normal delivery. Chiropractors have special tools and and techniques to adjust children and babies to make sure their growing bodies have the best chance to reach their full potential. There have even been several case studies on how Chiropractic has aided children with chronic ear infections, for example. This is because there are specific subluxations that happen in the neck (usually at birth) that put pressure on the drainage tubes, or eustachian tubes, for the ears.
There is a specific case of a 23-month-old female with chronic otitis media (or COM). COM is simply a term used to describe the damage that happens to the inner ear from long term inflammation and infections. This can even include a perforated ear drum. Unfortunately, she had traditional medical treatment with no relief in her symptoms. This included many treatments of a broad range of antibiotics, and even placing a tube into her ear. Just three days after her first chiropractic adjustment (at the C-1 vertebrae at the base of the skull) her ear drainage and pain were noticeably reduced. She was soon free of all symptoms, meaning removing the subluxation allowed for the nerves to control the drainage in her ears and for her body to naturally heal itself. If your child gets a lot of ear infections, make sure to get them checked at a chiropractor before doing all those costly surgeries. It could be as simple as a subluxation causing pressure on the eustation tube that creates a perfect environment for bacteria to grow. Studies also show evidence that misalignments in the same area of the upper neck decrease the power of the immune system at fighting off simple infections.
There are many more things that chiropractic may help with, so we hope that if you don’t have a chiropractor this inspires you to seek one out. Everyone can benefit from having a healthy nervous system; it’s the master control system of our body!
For a complimentary spinal health screening call our office at 970-377-3557.