I am a Doctor of Chiropractic. I have been called a quack, a fake doctor, a voodoo mistress, and many other things by people who are fearful, and clearly very uneducated about their own bodies and the anatomy and physiology of how they function.
They pump pain pills and drugs into their systems because they either don't know any better, were taught that it was the solution by their parents, peers, were ignored or even lied to by their own physicians and/or pharmaceutical companies, or they are simply too scared, or lazy to try something, anything different. If you don't understand chiropractic and the science behind it, educate yourself because you are seriously missing the boat and doing your structural body and nervous system a grave disservice.
There are 5 important things things you might not know about Chiropractic and getting adjusted.
If you don't understand chiropractic and the science behind it, you may be doing your structural body and nervous system a grave disservice.
1. Your pain is the very last symptom of your physical dysfunction. A person’s back is often restricted, “stuck” or unstable for months or even years before it begins to rear it’s ugly head as pain. This leads to a person showing up in a chiropractor’s office because they are finally so tired of suffering, and can’t do all the things they love to do without experiencing pain during or after. When I am out in the community, I hear people tell me all the time that they are not hurting, so they don’t need a chiropractor. Let me be clear… The absence of pain does NOT equal health. While medication may be needed when you are hurting, if you take a pill and the pain goes away, the dysfunction that caused it still persists. Muscle, ligament and joint injuries often occur as a result of long-term biomechanical dysfunction, sometimes from past injuries, making the area more susceptible to future injury.
2. Doctors don't do the healing. We never want to disappoint a patient, but a chiropractor will never “fix” you or “fix” your back. What we can do is restore proper motion to the joints in your spine, which will relieve the tension on the nerves and muscles. This will allow your body to function the way it was designed to function.
As a Chiropractor, we never treat a disease. We assess to find which spinal levels are fixated or “stuck”, the ones causing the structural dysfunction, and we mobilize them to restore proper nerve flow, so the nervous system may work as efficiently and effectively as possible.
3. We know more than your backbone. This surprises many people who had no idea that chiropractors give advice on chronic disorders, ergonomics and lifestyle, and we screen for conditions unrelated to the musculoskeletal system and refer out to other practitioners when necessary. Chiropractors are also able to complete specialties in other areas such as pediatrics, sports rehabilitation, neurology, clinical nutrition, addictions and compulsive disorders.
Other than particular specialties and the differences in learning to adjust and learning to prescribe medication, our training hours are not dissimilar from that of medical doctor. The following are the classroom hours for basic science requirements compiled and averaged following a review of curricula of 18 chiropractic schools and 22 medical schools.
4. Improved joint motion allows more nutrition and hydration to be pumped to discs or joint capsules and decreases the risk of degeneration and injury.
Whether sitting at a desk, or playing sports, we don’t tend to use our muscles and joints evenly! Chronic, long term pressure on certain joints and muscles can lead to severe imbalances in other joints and muscles. Thus creating a long chain of joint and muscular imbalance that usually leads to injury.
In a study on soccer players undergoing chiropractic care, it was found that chiropractic reduced the number of lower limb strains and sprains, and decreased injury recovery time and the number of weeks players missed due to injuries. Studies have also shown that chiropractic reduces the days of work missed by workers with low back pain compared to those being treated by a medical doctor, and that chiropractic is more effective than drugs for back and neck pain.
5. Most adjustments don't hurt. There is no bone snapping, warrior or Chuck Norris style pulling heads off spinal columns! The neck adjustments that some chiropractors use may cause anticipation for many new patients, but is actually much more gentle than they ever imagined, and involves a quick, direct thrust to a specific spinal bone.
The sound an adjustment makes is called a cavitation and is only pushing the bone back into the joint causing gasses to be released from the joint capsule, which creates the popping or cracking noise. Adjustments are applied specifically to improve the motion of your joints and limit the small dysfunctions that over time can lead to arthritis. Most people after an adjustment describe the feeling as being “lighter”, having greater ease in moving the body, and being able to stand up taller.
If you don't understand the science of what a Doctor of Chiropractic does, please feel free to contact me and ask any questions you have. In our office, Doctor means TEACHER and we pride ourselves on the education we provide to our patients!