Many people experience back and neck pain that requires medication. Chiropractors offer a natural, drug-free approach to treating injuries through chiropractic care.
Chiropractic care includes manually manipulating muscles and soft tissue for enhanced movement, pain management, and improved overall health. Other treatments include electrical stimulation, stretching exercises, massage therapy, joint bracing and taping (Kinesio tape), and referrals to integrative medicine experts for nutrition guidance.
Manual adjustments are a type of chiropractic care performed by hand or using an instrument such as a drop-away table. During spinal manipulation, a chiropractor applies a controlled amount of force to the spine to correct misalignments.
Some benefits of spinal manipulation are improving the alignment of spinal vertebrae, reducing joint inflammation, and alleviating muscle spasms. This procedure can effectively reduce back pain, neck pain, and headaches. Additionally, studies indicate that spinal manipulation can decrease the dependence on pain relievers.
Chiropractors often perform spinal manipulation while the patient is lying face down in a prone position (on their stomach) with the support of a pillow. X-rays or other imaging scans may be used to determine the best locations for a spinal adjustment. A palpation technique is then used to identify whether the vertebrae are moving properly in affiliation with the ones below and above them.
Soft Tissue Therapies
Soft tissue therapies are designed to help relax muscles, break up fibrous adhesions and knots (Myofascial Trigger Points), restore a normal range of motion to joints and increase flexibility. They are often used in conjunction with manual adjustments to accelerate recovery.
This type of chiropractic care treatment may include proprioceptive neuromuscular facilitation (PNF) and dynamic stretching routines. They are also designed to address the underlying cause of injury, including postural imbalances and irregular biomechanical patterns.
In addition to improving muscle fibers’ length, resilience, and function, these techniques reduce inflammation by enhancing blood flow to the area. This promotes the removal of cellular waste and decreases the accumulation of acidic byproducts of metabolite breakdown, such as carbon dioxide.
Massage helps relieve pain and can assist with the emotional and psychological aspects of healing. It can alleviate anxiety, depression, and stress, often accompanying chronic health conditions such as fibromyalgia or back pain.
Studies show that releasing hormones such as endorphins occurs during therapeutic massage. These hormones act as the body’s natural painkillers and can mask the sensation of pain.
In this type of chiropractic care, the therapist manipulates soft tissue, such as muscles, tendons, and ligaments, during a massage. This is done with varying degrees of pressure. Trigger point massage is specifically designed to alleviate tight areas of muscle that are known to cause pain in other areas of the body. This type of massage has decreased the frequency and intensity of migraine headaches.
Rehabilitation and Exercise Programs
Chiropractors also help people reduce their reliance on pain medication. While pain medications can relieve pain, it doesn’t address the underlying cause of the problem, and symptoms often return once the effects of the medication wear off.
Chiropractic treatments promote optimal blood flow, which helps heal injuries and boosts the body’s overall strength and energy levels. This is particularly important for athletes at higher risk of sprains and strains when their joints don’t move freely or properly.
Maintaining proper spinal alignment and range of motion is key for athletic performance, and chiropractic care can also help improve flexibility. This enables athletes to perform more complex movements and reduces their risk of injury during workouts. In addition to addressing current problems, chiropractors can offer advice about how to prevent future injuries.
While taking a painkiller might relieve the symptoms, chiropractic care treats the root cause of your discomfort. It improves neurological health, muscle strength, flexibility, and range of motion. It also increases your energy and enhances your mood.
According to Wellness Way Chiropractic, regularly seeing your chiropractor prevents chronic pain and can help your spine perform better. In addition, your chiropractor can offer advice on small changes you can make at home or work that might support spinal health.
A chiropractor can also boost your immune system, making you more likely to fight illnesses and infections. This can decrease the need for multiple physician and hospital visits. It also improves your sleep, which helps reduce inflammation and increases healing.