Chiropractic care was invented by David Palmer in 1895, but therapeutic manipulation can trace its roots back to Hippocrates in the 5th Century B.C. Defined as both a science and an art, chiropractic is more than a method for treating back pain, tapping into the inherent recuperative powers of the body. This form of healthcare focuses on the relationship between the musculoskeletal structure of the body, particularly the spinal column, and the nervous system in the restoration and maintenance of health. This natural approach to attaining wellness doesn’t rely upon medication or surgery.
Chiropractic is the largest, most regulated, and best recognized of the professions that fall within the category of complementary and alternative medicine. According to a survey of patients seeking alternative care, chiropractors are used more often than any other alternative provider group and the [patient] satisfaction with chiropractic care is very high. There is steadily increasing patient use of chiropractic in the United States, which has tripled in the past two decades. From a February 2002 article by William Meeker, DC, MPH and Scott Haldeman, DC, PhD, MD, FRCP in the Annals of Internal Medicine.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is Chiropractic?
Chiropractic is a healthcare profession that focuses on disorders of the musculoskeletal and nervous systems, and the effects of these disorders on general health. Chiropractic care is used most often to treat neuro-musculoskeletal complaints, including, but not limited to: back pain, neck pain, pain in the joints of the arms or legs, and headaches.
What Does a Chiropractor Do?
Doctors of Chiropractic practice a drug-free, hands-on approach to healthcare that includes patient examination, diagnosis and treatment. Chiropractors have broad diagnostic skills and are trained to prescribe therapeutic and rehabilitative exercises, nutritional, dietary and lifestyle counseling. The most common therapeutic procedure performed by chiropractors is known as “spinal manipulation,” or “chiropractic adjustment” and is done to correct subluxations and restore joint mobility by manually applying a controlled force to joints that have become restricted in their movement. Adjustment of the affected joint and tissues restores mobility, thereby alleviating pain and muscle tightness, allowing tissues to heal. There are dozens of different ways to perform an adjustment; please refer to the technique quide to learn more.
Are Chiropractic Adjustments Painful?
Adjustments rarely cause discomfort. However, patients may sometimes experience mild soreness or aching following treatment (as with some forms of exercise) that usually resolves within 12 to 48 hours.
Will I Need To See A Chiropractor More Than Once?
Sometime subluxations have been present for a long time and the muscles connected to those misaligned vertebrae get used to their positions and have a tendency to pull the bone back out of place. It may take several visits before the adjustment “holds,” and the bone settles into its proper alignment.
Who Needs Chiropractic Care?
When a vertebra is out of alignment, it can interfere with the normal flow of life energy through nearby nerves. If the affected nerve happens to be carrying a message to the liver, the function of the liver can be altered. The health of every part of the body depends on the proper flow of energy and if that is interrupted or interfered with, the result is dis-ease. When bones are allowed to go back to their proper positions, the nerve energy can resume its natural flow. When the flow of nerve energy is restored, the body is often able to heal itself. So, who needs chiropractic? Whoever needs a normal flow of life energy in their body. Anyone who has headaches, back pain or any other kind of illness or injury – children or seniors, all can benefit from chiropractic care.
At Advanced Wellness Center we strive to offer you the best chiropractic care. We understand that no one technique or style of care will benefit every patient. For that reason, we offer a variety of treatment methods, as listed below. We also the guide linked above that details the expertise of each of our practitioners.
The Activator and Biokinetic Stimulators are specially designed, hand-held chiropractic instruments that deliver precise and gentle corrections to misaligned joints and vertebrae. They can be gently pressed against any area of joint discomfort and with a couple of clicks, they deliver a very fast pulse to stimulate nerve receptors and restore mobility to joints. These techniques can be helpful for people who are experiencing an intense, acutely painful episode, or for anyone who feels uncomfortable with the common “popping” sound often heard when joints are naturally released of pressure with traditional corrections.
Active Release Technique (ART)
ART is a soft tissue based massage technique that treats problems within muscles, tendons, ligaments, fascia and nerves. ART can quickly and permanently resolve conditions like headaches, back pain, carpal tunnel syndrome and tennis elbow that stem from overused muscles. It treats abnormalities by combining precisely directed tension with very specific patient movements.
After building up pain for over five years, I came to AWC with severe pain and stiffness in my neck, shoulders and back. After just two months of treatment, I am able to move and the pain is almost gone. It has been amazing. I am now more attune to my body. I recommend AWC to anyone with a stressful life. – Dawn G.
Applied Kinesiology (AK); Nutritional Response Testing (NRT); Contact Reflex Analysis (CRA); Quantum Reflex Analysis (QRA)
These muscle-testing systems are used to subtly determine possible underlying weaknesses, imbalances or stressors to the body (allergic, toxic-chemical, mechanical, emotional, or deficiency) that cause ill health. A doctor specializing in these techniques makes a determination by evaluating the relative strength or weakness of any single muscle while touching reflex points on the surface of the body. These points correspond to specific organs, glands, energy meridians, and more. A kind of body scan is made. These types of approaches have been validated and reproducibly used by doctors of many specialties around the world.
This term refers to a variety of hands-on procedures that have been designed to very gently restore joint mobility and to relieve tension from the joints, muscles, and nerves. The sessions may involve the doctor gently touching key points along the spine and muscles, deep breathing techniques, gentle massage procedures and small active or passive body movements. This can be an excellent choice for young children, seniors, or sensitive patients dealing with deep-seated, chronic pain issues.
This technique treats neurosacral problems originating at the skull. The interlaced smaller bones of the cranium – which connect like puzzle pieces – should move in response to the flow of spinal fluid and breathing cycles. This method was developed to properly align these small bones and can especially benefit patients suffering from chronic headaches, TMJ or other general physical complaints.
These techniques focus on correcting misalignments in the spine that may be causing pain and/or spasm and can interfere with the nerves that pass through the spine. By improving the nervous system’s ability to communicate, regulate and coordinate healing of the body, these techniques relieve nerve interference and improve a broad range of health problems. The doctors will most likely use their hands to deliver a precise and careful thrust to correct the misalignments.
This treatment style incorporates the use of a special table that can be adjusted in various ways to accommodate patient comfort. Different sections of the table – designed to absorb most of the force of the adjustment – can be modified to support the patient’s weight as the practitioner applies a slow, steady, solid pulse. The sections below the area of the body being pressed on gently release, or subtly drop’ down, allowing the speed of gravity to assist in this gentle yet powerful technique. The result is a more comfortable adjustment to the patient, with less force being directly felt by the body.
Flexion Distraction (COX/Leander)
This technique uses a hydraulic table that automatically moves the patient’s back in and out of flexion and extension in smooth, rhythmic motions. It is designed to provide a mild traction, or opening, of the joint spaces between the vertebrae, offering a deep, subtle stretch to the smaller muscles, ligaments and discs of the spine. It is used to help reduce inflammation (the pain associated with disc problems) and provide overall flexibility to the spine.
My daughter was nine when she got her first migraine. We went to our family physician and neurologist. They tried to help with medication, but she was always so drugged. After two weeks at AWC she no longer needed drugs. Now that she is in college, she visits AWC once a month to keep her migraine free. – Gloria L.
This method involves taping over and around muscles in order to assist and give support, or to prevent over-contraction. One technique gives support while still a maintaining full range of motion. A second technique, which is most commonly used in the acute stage of rehabilitation, helps prevent overuse or over-contraction.
Graston Technique® (GT)
This technique utilizes specialty instruments for the treatment of soft-tissue injuries. GT allows the practitioner to provide improved diagnostic treatment with a shorter rehabilitation time for the patient. Many chronic conditions, once thought to be permanent, can be eliminated without the need of anti-inflammatory medications.
Neuro Emotional Technique
This technique (NET) is used to determine if a physical complaint is related to an emotional experience or memory. The evaluation is done by testing muscle weakness while the patient recalls feelings, experiences or memories. Once the triggering experience is identified, the patient is asked to focus on the memory and its impact on the body can then be released through the stimulation of various meridian points. Many common physical complaints can be related to emotional wounds or ongoing conflicts. These techniques do not replace psychotherapy to consciously resolve such issues, but are uniquely effective at relieving the physical components of emotional distress. In fact, patients involved in psychotherapy often find their overall progress vastly improved with the addition of neuro emotional techniques.
Many chiropractic techniques are gentle enough to be used in the healthcare of babies and children. From the stresses placed on a baby’s neck by a difficult birth to the many falls experienced by children learning to walk and play, babies and children are vulnerable to many strains and injuries that often don’t reveal themselves to parents, yet can affect the child’s health and growth. Chiropractic can gently help guide the direction of growth and wellness from an early age and has been clinically shown to help children deal with behavioral and health struggles such as ADD, learning difficulties, and scoliosis. Babies have been successfully treated for colic, as well as digestive, feeding and sleeping difficulties. Introducing your child to the chiropractic lifestyle can help them develop a more holistic and natural approach to their own health for the rest of their lives.
Pregnancy can be one of the most wonderful times in a woman’s life. The unique physical challenges during pregnancy require unique treatment approaches. Chiropractic can guide expecting mothers through this beautiful process by helping relieve tension from the body, offering nourishing food and supplement options, and encouraging a more natural, holistic lifestyle. A healthy, more relaxed mother will encourage the development of a healthy, more relaxed child. Chiropractic can be effective in preparing a mother’s body for the delivery process and has also been shown to help moms “bounce back” quickly, with increased health and vitality.
Sacro Occipital Technique (SOT)
This method identifies the connection between the base of the spine (sacrum) and the top of the spine (cranium). Focusing on the flow and natural rhythms of spinal fluid and breathing, the practitioner can identify when these rhythms are “off” and help bring back synchrony. This is done through gentle manual adjustments and the placement of a wedge under the hips while lying down, to allow gravity to gentle realign the hips and spine.
Trigger Point Therapy
Muscles that are tired, overworked, under-worked or toxic can often signal trails of pain to certain areas of the body. Trigger points are areas in these muscles that can be the source of pain and discomfort. Trigger point therapy involves the use of sustained, specific pressure over these tender areas to allow them to relax and release slowly. Along with trigger point therapy, other muscle relaxation techniques can be utilized to lengthen, relax and strengthen out of balance muscles.
This technique, developed by Dr. Randy Zindler, is excellent for assessing the proper muscle balance and strength of the neck, shoulders, arms, hips and legs, which then determines the necessary correction. By balancing the body’s muscles, injuries can be prevented and chronic or recurring injuries to the muscles or joints can be corrected. This is an excellent technique for athletes of all types.