Chiropractic treatment of back pain is natural and holistic, but is it effective and does it make sense economically?
Chiropractic consists of many possible alternative remedies for common health concerns. Chiropractors are usually knowledgeable and diversified healers who will use any number of methods to heal a patient’s complaints, as well as creating a state of optimum general health.
The main treatment method used by most chiropractors is manual spinal adjustments. Chiropractic embodies the philosophy that given the right circumstances, the body can heal itself of most disease and injury. Additionally, chiropractic firmly supports the prevention of disease and injury, as well as promoting overall wellness, through the use of regular vertebral adjustments.
This discussion provides an overview of the various types of chiropractic treatments that are commonly employed for back and neck pain sufferers.
Chiropractic Treatment with Adjustments
All chiropractors have individual styles and use different techniques to perform their spinal adjustments. The style can range from extremely tender to almost brutally aggressive. Chiropractors claim that these spinal adjustments correct nerve problems and encourage proper energy flow throughout the spine.
Many patients respond very well to chiropractic adjustments and report good, but temporary results. A few patients have adverse reactions to adjustment therapy, ranging from pain to fear to actual and verifiable injury.
In extremely rare cases, spinal adjustments have been associated with strokes.
Most chiropractors will start with a verbal consultation. A thorough patient health history will be taken, as well as specific information about the current pain or complaint. Some chiropractors will take x-rays to determine if chiropractic methods will be useful and safe for the patient.
It is common for chiropractors to use heat or ice prior to treatment. This will make the muscles respond better to the adjustment and increase the effectiveness of the manipulation.
Some doctors of chiropractic offer massage or hydrotherapy after a spinal manipulation to help the muscles relax and the adjustment to “set in”.
TENS is another popular add-on therapy before or after chiropractic manipulation.
Nonsurgical spinal decompression is a popular service that many chiropractors offer for treating herniated and degenerated spinal discs.
Guidance on Optimizing Chiropractic Treatment
Some patients find chiropractic adjustments a pleasurable and relaxing experience. Others are nervous and find the adjustments uncomfortable or even painful. If the doctor reassures the patient and explains the entire process to them, most patients will look forward to their next chiropractic session.
I generally liked the feeling of most adjustments and occasionally I did experience instant release of muscular tension. I also had a few really bad experiences, including an adjustment by one of my best chiropractors that actually landed me in the hospital a few hours later with unbelievable back spasms.
Do not fool yourself… It is possible to be hurt by a chiropractor. Be careful with chiropractic. The system has shown excellent results for back pain, but it is not for every patient or condition.
Personally, I think that the placebo effect is responsible for much of the relief experienced by an average patient who enters extended chiropractic care. Be especially cautious about entering into long-term treatment.
Remember, focus on health and you will likely be healthy. Focus on suffering, treatment and pursuing temporary relief, and you will likely remain in pain.