What Is Chiropractic Care?
What is chiropractic care? Is it effective? Who can benefit from
chiropractic care? All these questions are at the forefront of a patient’s mind when he or she considers
chiropractic treatment as an option. While it may be a less traditional mode of treating conditions than medication
and surgery, chiropractic care certainly deserves a second look.
Chiropractic care is often thought of as an alternative route of
treating injuries involving the spine and the surrounding musculature. Its applications may not be limited to
affecting these particular health issues, but these are the most common applications.
Injuries involving the spine and the surrounding musculature can often be treated with a combination of medications
and surgery, but is this the only way to deal with such injuries? Is chiropractic care a viable option for those
who wish to pursue a non-invasive treatment modality? The answer to these questions begins with a look at the
purpose and practice of chiropractic care.
Chiropractic care is often only a part of an all inclusive
treatment regimen. A chiropractor begins by taking a patient’s health history, performing an examination, running
the necessary tests, and evaluating a patient. It is from this point that the chiropractor proceeds to make a
diagnosis, if appropriate, and to decide the best course of treatment for a patient.
Through an accurate diagnosis and the proper follow up, a
chiropractor seeks to ameliorate or even repair conditions that involve the spine. What constitutes a condition
involving the spine may not have reached a consensus in the medical community as of yet, but the fact that the
spinal column serves a function in various systems throughout the body as a gateway or messenger service, if you
will, leads medical professionals and lay people alike to wonder where the health of the spine ends and the health
of the body as a complete entity begins.
The spinal manipulation itself is the method through which the
chiropractor seeks to realign and return the spine to its natural healthy structure. This is the well known
application of pressure to the body to reorganize and realign the spinal structure. This structure, when returned
to its proper alignment, allows the body to carry out all of its tasks more effectively.
This process may be accomplished in a single visit although it
often takes repeat visits that may last for weeks or even years. The patient is often seen on a weekly basis for
treatments in an effort to retrain the spine to assume proper positioning within the body.
The duration and frequency of treatment is decided on a case by
case basis and all depends upon the needs of the patient. It also depends upon the reason for the treatment. The
treatment may be administered for an acute condition, for a chronic or ongoing condition, or as a preventative
measures. Any overview given has to begin with the knowledge that no two patients are completely alike and will not
necessarily require the same course of treatment.
The reason why a person may seek out or be seen by a chiropractor
is usually for pain management or resolution. It may also be for reasons regarding an individual’s range of motion.
People tend to seek out medical care when there are outward signs of a condition within the body, and pain is at
the forefront of reasons to seek out chiropractic care. It is also pain issues with the musculature of the body
that are primarily associated with chiropractic treatment so it stands to reason that this would be the main reason
to find such care.
These injuries may be the result of repetitive stress injuries, a
pinched nerve, an acute trauma, or any of a long list of other possible causes. Whatever the reason, the interior
problem has developed to the extent where it is now presenting with exterior symptoms that cannot be ignored. At
this point, the patient is forced to seek some form of treatment to avoid the unpleasant and possibly painful
Basically, the process of treatment begins when a patient has a
problem, usually pain, and is seeking relief. That is where the chiropractor comes in, but what are the mechanisms
by which this process works?