What is Chiropractic and what does a Chiropractor do?

What is Chiropractic and what does a Chiropractor do?

Chiropractor

Chiropractor

Every day, thousands of people get chiropractic treatment for a wide variety of issues that center on the skeletal and muscular systems of the body. For most, spinal adjustments that reduce lower back and neck pain along with the shoulders, knees and even headaches can be helped with the right chiropractic treatment.

While still considered an alternate form of treatment by the medical profession, chiropractic methods have been in use since the late 19th century. In addition, millions of people have been helped over the years by chiropractic therapy that helps reduce or even eliminate their pain.


What is Chiropractic Treatment?

Chiropractic Treatment

Chiropractic Treatment

For the most part, chiropractic treatment addresses consistent or even chronic pain that is caused by skeletal or muscular factors which, when properly adjusted, can provide relief. The actual principle that this type of treatment is based is on changing the structure and function of the skeleton and the supporting muscular systems in order to provide greater relief to the areas of the body that are causing the pain.

Most of the focus of chiropractic care is on the spine. However all of the joints are in the realm of this type of treatment as well. By addressing the joints of the skeleton, the surrounding muscle tissue and nervous system are also affected as well. In fact, the nervous system is the area in which the chiropractor is involved in trying to relieve the pain that the patient is feeling at the time.

By altering the structure through stretching, massaging and manipulating the skeleton and surrounding tissues, the effect is one that helps to bring more relief to the patient. The theory behind chiropractic care is that affecting one link in the chain can have an effect on the other links as well.

This is because chiropractic treatment is based on the belief that the body operates as a whole when it comes to injury, pain and so forth. Something that affects one part of the body affects all of it. Therefore, by supplying treatment to a certain area of the body, it will then properly treat the source of the pain, discomfort or other issue as well.


What Does a Chiropractor Treat?

What Does a Chiropractor Treat

What Does a Chiropractor Treat

There are a number of issues that a chiropractor treats using the techniques of skeletal manipulation. The most common treatments are used on the following; -       Lower Back Pain & Back Injuries

  • Headaches & Migraines
  • Pain or Problems in Joints, such as the knee, shoulders, hands and feet
  • Period Pain
  • Sciatica & more
These are generally the most common issues that chiropractors deal with on a daily basis. There are other medical issues that chiropractors may treat, however research into these areas is rather limited at best. For the most part, the issues listed above represent the most effective treatment that a chiropractor can give to their patients.


What does a Chiropractor Do?

Whiplash

Whiplash

A chiropractor is licensed to carry out their services in diagnosing, then treating issues that fall within their realm through spinal manipulation and other similar techniques. A chiropractor will often start by giving their patient a full examination to determine the type of pain or suffering that is being experienced. Part of that examination may include the following;
-       X-rays
-       Observation
-       Feeling the Spine, Pelvis and Head

X-rays will determine if there is any misalignment that is visible in the spinal region while the actual feeling of the spine, pelvis, neck and head areas will provide additional information to use in their diagnosis. Observation includes how a patient walks, stands or generally moves. The entire exam may involve the patient standing up, lying down or both to help determine the proper diagnosis.


Once the symptoms have been properly registered and the initial exam is complete, the chiropractor will then schedule a series of treatments which may include the following;

-       Pressing or pushing the spine or joints
-       Using gravity and the body weight of the patient
-       Alternating from slow to fast hand pressure
-       Using an adjustable table to assist in the manipulation process
-       Places wedges under the body or using mechanical instruments for adjustments

All of these techniques are common when treatment is being applied. Each of these techniques is designed to bring about better alignment of the spine or joints in question in order to provide relief from the pain that is being felt.


The Kinematic Chain Theory

The “kinematic” chain is the main theory behind chiropractic treatment. Essentially, this is why adjusting the spine in one way may cause relief from headaches which are in another part of the body. By affecting one part of the chain, other parts of the chain will benefit as the theory goes. However, this does not end with the spine and the pain relief that is felt, but also includes the internal organs as well.

An area of the body that is misaligned or does not enjoy the mobility it once did may be causing pain to be generated in another area. By addressing what may be the source of the pain, even though it is in a different area of the body will result in the pain going away. This is at the core of chiropractic technique.

The chiropractor will run a full exam of the body to not only locate where the pain is being felt, but perhaps the source of the pain as well if it is located in another part of the body. For example, a knee that is not quite properly aligned may be causing pain in the lower back because the body has to re-adjust to compensate. By aligning the knee properly, the rest of the body can go back to its normal condition as well.

Overall, the job of a chiropractor is to locate and address the source of the pain that patients are feeling. However, if they discover that the patient may need additional care, such as the source of the pain being a fracture of the bone for example, then they will recommend proper medical treatment at the appropriate facilities.


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