Chiropractic Information What is Chiropractic? Chiropractic is one of the disciplines among a wide range of healing arts. The study of chiropractic involves the study of human anatomy and physiology in order to better understand how the body works and how to maintain and restore health. Of particular importance is the study of manipulation or adjustment of the body’s joints (especially vertebral joints), muscles and ligaments. A basic principle of chiropractic is that structure (anatomy) and function (physiology) are related. Meaning, the shape, relationship, and mobility of body parts can and often do influence how the body works. To illustrate this principle, imagine the perfect structure a new, well-designed automobile. If the car’s structure is altered, either through normal wear or by accident, the car will not function as well as when it was new. The practice of chiropractic is mainly concerned with influencing the structure of the body in order to allow the body to function better. The practice of manipulation is an ancient art, practiced in many cultures, for many centuries. In 1895, Dr. Daniel David Palmer began to systematize a particular method of manipulation and named it chiropractic. The word chiropractic is derived from the Greek words, cheir (hand), and praktikos (practice), meaning “done by hand.” Chiropractic recognizes that the health of human beings is not singularly influenced by the body’s structure. Other important influences include nutrition, hygiene, exercise, positive emotions, and spiritual wellbeing. Chiropractic is a drug- and surgery-free, hands-on system of healthcare that respects the body’s ability to heal itself. Who Can Benefit from Chiropractic Care? People of all ages (infants, children, and adults) with a wide variety of health concerns can benefit from chiropractic care. The focus of chiropractic care is the correction of subluxations. Subluxation is the word chiropractors use to describe the misalignment or reduced mobility of a joint. This reduced mobility or misalignment, while still within the joint’s normal range of motion, results in disturbed function. The effects of subluxations may be felt by the patient as pain, muscle tension, lack of muscle coordination, restricted movement, numbness, tingling, headaches, and a variety of other neurological or functional disturbances. Symptoms may appear immediately or may develop slowly over many years. The cause of subluxations may be mechanical (such as, car accidents, falls, physical trauma, overworked muscles, postural stresses), chemical (improper diet, pollution, other toxic or chemical imbalances), and / or mental stress or spiritual stress. The correction of subluxations allows the entire body to function better. Particularly, this structural correction allows the nervous system to function better. The nervous system is an important controller and coordinator of body function, influencing all muscular activity, circulation, and metabolic activity. Any treatment which enhances the functioning of the nervous system will favorably influence the health of the individual. Regular chiropractic care has also been shown to be helpful in maintaining general health and wellbeing and increasing vitality. Chiropractic Adjustments are Safe Chiropractic spinal adjustments are extremely safe when performed by chiropractors. In fact, chiropractic adjustments are among the safest treatments for most back and neck problems— much safer than other common treatments for musculoskeletal pain such as prescription non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). The American Journal of Medicine reported on studies that investigated the risks between spinal adjustments and other treatments for the same condition. One analysis concluded there was no evidence that NSAIDs were any more effective than spinal manipulation, but the risk of serious complications or death was between 100 and 400 times greater. In another review, estimates of serious gastrointestinal events from NSAIDs were 1 per 1,000 patients, whereas complications of cervical manipulations were 5 – 10 per 10 million adjustments.

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