Chiropractic Care – What it is (and Isn’t…)
Chiropractic for wellness
So much misinterpretation of the word and the profession has happened that speaking about what is not chiropractic first is more relevant. Getting a massage is not chiropractic, having electrical stimulation is not chiropractic, using hot packs is not chiropractic, taping muscles and limbs is not chiropractic, taking supplements is not chiropractic and stretching tight muscles is not chiropractic. These are various modalities you may see in a chiropractor’s office and they are certainly beneficial to the body, but when we say Chiropractic – from the Greek meaning ‘done by hand’- we mean improving how well the nerve system conducts messages between the brain and the body by aligning the spine.
For example, through modern science we know that the spine protects the spinal cord and nerves – that ‘communication highway’ carrying messages between the brain and the body. That connection is what controls and coordinates every single function in your body; from feeling sensations to moving voluntary muscles to doing all the automatic things like digesting food, beating the heart, fighting infections and healing cuts.
A poorly aligned spine damages that communication by interfering with how the spinal cord and nerves work.
A properly aligned spine allows that brain-body communication to function at its best – meaning you not only feel better, but function better on the inside.
Do this test. Take one hand and squeeze around the other forearm just above the wrist. Go ahead, give it a good squeeze and hold. Now, you would agree that you’re not actually touching the blood vessels, yet you are stopping blood flow to the hand. Over time this will lead to the loss of function of your hand.
That same process happens in the spine. When bones are out of alignment they don’t actually touch the nerves but they squeeze the tissue around the nerves and interfere not with blood flow but nerve flow. And depending on where in the spine this is happening, a different nerve will be damaged which could cause problems in the hand, leg, fingers, toes, heart, lung, kidneys… anywhere.
In short, WHAT chiropractors do is align the spine. WHY they align the spine is to relieve the tension and stress on the nerve system. This affects every system and cell in the body.
Chiropractic care can be an effective treatment for many common conditions and injuries including muscular and skeletal conditions and injuries, headaches, some respiratory and heart conditions, sleep disorders, stress, and many others. Try chiropractic as a natural, non-invasive, time-tested treatment. Contact the Author, or browse our Merchant Directory to find a local Chiropractor in your area.
Author: Dr. Harry Heeder, Doctor of Chiropractic of San Diego, CA