Chiropractic is a form of manual therapy that literally means "done by hand". Treatment involves manual adjustments of the vertebrae of the spine as well as other joints of the body that can range from the ankle to the jaw. The Chiropractic adjustment helps to relieve pain by correcting the alignment and restoring normal mobility in the joints, thereby speeding up the recovery time and a return to everyday activities as soon as possible.
Adjustments to the spine are crucial in that the vertebrae form a bony housing that covers and protects your spinal cord, your body's information highway also know as your central nervous system. Stress and strain on your body (whether from an injury or poor posture and repetitive stress) can put pressure on the vertebral column thereby compromising the nerve signals that run to and from the central nervous system. That is why an issue in your spine can have other consequences like pain in your arm or leg.
Chiropractic can be used as a conservative effective treatment for:
- Low back pain
- Neck pain / headache
- Whiplash (motor vehicle accident)
- Sports injuries
- Joint pain
We also provide spinal correction utilizing an adjusting instrument as an alternative to traditional hands-on chiropractic techniques. With these instruments, there is no twisting or turning of the spine and no "cracking" during the adjustment for those patients who may be nervous about manual adjustments. These newer correction methods make Chiropractic even safer, more comfortable and more effective than ever before.
What is an Adjustment?
The adjustment is a treatment procedure performed by a Chiropractor; it can be done by hand or with a tool or instrument. The purpose of the adjustment is to restore proper motion and alignment to the joints and thereby stimulate nerve receptors lining the joints and associated muscles and ligaments. As a consequence, pain symptoms are typically alleviated and the recovery time reduced.
A chiropractic adjustment typically involves:
- A high velocity, short lever arm thrust applied to a specific joint
- An accompanying, audible release of gas (joint cavitation) that is caused by the release of oxygen, nitrogen, and carbon dioxide.
It should be noted that joint cavitation or cracking does not occur every single time. Typically this is a result of significant muscle guarding by the patient who cannot adequately relax during the chiropractic manipulation (usually due to acute pain).
Our clinic specializes in the Activator method that utilizes a hand-held instrument to deliver the thrust portion of your adjustment. The activator instrument delivers between 10-40 lbs of pressure, depending on the instrument setting and the area being adjusted.
This gentle impulse force oftentimes feels much lighter than the typical manual adjustment because the thrust from an Activator instrument is focused over a smaller area with a velocity that is up to 200 times faster than a manual thrust delivered by hand.
In terms of effectiveness, the majority of research studies have shown that both approaches produce excellent results in terms of patient care and recovery. Both forms of adjusting are very safe with extremely low risk of injury and side effects.
Chiropractic Adjustment side effects
The most common side effect to a chiropractic adjustment is achiness or soreness in the joint or surrounding muscles. If this soreness occurs, it is usually within the first few hours post-treatment and does not last longer than 24 hours after the chiropractic adjustment. Application of an ice pack often reduces the symptoms relatively quickly.