What are Chiropractic AdjustmentsThe Mayo Clinic states a chiropractic adjustment is “a procedure in which trained specialists (chiropractors) use their hands or a small instrument to apply a controlled, sudden force to a spinal joint.” These adjustments are also known as manipulations and are used to improve motion and your overall physical function. They are done for many reasons, but the most common conditions seen are headaches, neck pain, and lower back pain.
What to ExpectThe chiropractor will place you in several specific positions while on an adjustable table. The table is comfortable and padded. The chiropractor will apply controlled force with their hands and you may hear sounds like cracking and popping while it is being done. These sudden movements will move the joint during treatment and let them go outside their typical range of motion.
How Chiropractic Adjustments HelpStudies and research have shown that spinal manipulation helps improve neck pain and lower back pain, as well as chronic headaches. It may take several appointments before a major change is noted and you may need to have periodic adjustments to continue to see the difference. Maintenance adjustments are always a good thing to keep the benefits of your treatments flowing.
If you’d like to see if chiropractic adjustments and treatment could help you, give Forever Oak Health Center and Dr. Kozlowski a call today at 248-907-0887.
Chiropractic adjustments are performed to treat a wide variety of conditions, including (but not limited to):
- Carpal tunnel syndrome and other repetitive strain disorders
- Chronic muscle pain and stiffness
- Most musculoskeletal and sports-related injuries
- Nerve disorders
- Pain and stiffness in the back, chest, abdomen, neck, hips and shoulders, as well as extremities, such as arms, legs, and feet
- Sciatica pain
- Whiplash and other traumatic injuries
Adjustments can be performed while sitting, standing, or lying down. Some adjustments involve special instruments or tables.
Some common adjustment techniques include:
- Instrument adjustments, which involve a spring-loaded device.
- Lumbar roll, in which the chiropractor applies a firm, yet quick thrust to a misaligned vertebra while the patient lies on his or her side.
- Motion palpation, a hand technique the chiropractor uses to determine if your vertebrae are properly aligned.
- Release work, in which the chiropractor uses gentle pressure with the fingers to separate the vertebrae.
- Table adjustments, which entail lying on a specially designed table that drops when pressure is applied to a specific area. The dropping motion allows more gentle adjustments than some manual adjustments do.
- Toggle drop, which entails firm pressure applied on a specific area of the spine by using crossed hands.
Chiropractors take many factors-including size, weight, and muscle structure-into consideration when deciding on which adjustment to make. Sometimes, ice, electrical stimulation, or massage therapy (including traction massage) are used prior to a spinal manipulation in order to relax the muscles.
In some cases, it may necessary to perform an adjustment while you are sedated.
Spinal manipulation under anesthesia, which is considered a very safe procedure, is usually reserved for patients with conditions such as chronic neck, back, and joint pain, muscle spasm, shortened muscles, and fibrous adhesions.
Another form of adjustment called craniosacral therapy, or "CST," involves exerting very mild pressure to the body's craniosacral system, which is comprised of the membranes and cerebrospinal fluid that surround and protect the brain and spinal cord. This includes cranium-which is composed of the skull, face and mouth, and the "sacrum," or tailbone.
CST has been shown to provide relief from chronic neck and back pain, scoliosis, brain and spinal cord injuries, migraines, chronic fatigue, nervous system disorders, jaw joint problems, and stress disorders. (Conditions such as aneurysm and intracranial hemorrhage prohibit this kind of therapy.)
Adjustments almost always do not involve any pain or discomfort. The important thing for a patient to keep in mind is to remain relaxed, because stiffening up may impede the adjustment process. Popping sounds are sometimes heard during adjustments; these are usually pockets of air being released behind a joint or other bony structure.
Adjustments can leave you with a greater sense of well-being, calm, and most importantly, on the road to a life without pain. Following an adjustment, some patients experience mild aching or soreness in their spinal joints or muscles, which can usually be relieved by an ice or heat pack.
Adjustments have been shown to:
- Increase blood flow
- Increase pain tolerance levels
- Increase range of motion
- Increase the body's secretion of "good" chemicals, such as melatonin and endorphins
- Reduce blood pressure
- Reduce tension and muscle pressure