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Chiropractic

Socrates advised,
"If you would seek health,
look first to the spine
."

      Chiropractic is the Science, Art, and Philosophy that concerns itself with the restoration of good health by restoring and maintaining a properly functioning nervous system. The goal of the Chiropractor is to restore and maintain your body's health.

      The art of joint manipulation has been practiced for thousands of years. Hippocrates, The Father of Medicine (460-370 BC), describes manipulative procedures in his monumental work known as the Corpus Hippocrateum.

      Galen (130-202 AD) earned the title 'Prince of Physicians' when he relieved the paralysis of the right hand of Eudemas (a prominent Roman scholar) by careful manipulation of his neck.

      During the Middle Ages, the art of manipulation was practiced by bonesetters. This art was passed from generation to generation and was practiced in most communities in Europe, North Africa, and Asia by practitioners who learned their skills by apprenticeship. This photo, depicting neck manipulation, was copied from China as early as 940 AD.

      A central premise of chiropractic is that vertebral misalignments occur in the spine and can produce interferences in the function of the nervous system which have remarkable and far-reaching effects by impairing the individual's health and performance. These misalignments are referred to in chiropractic as subluxations, and are corrected with adjustments administered by Doctors of Chiropractic (D.C.'s).

      Spinal joint fixation (subluxation) may result in nerve irritation, inhibition of the transmission of nerve impulses, interference with the axoplasmic transport along the nerve axons, impairment of the d.c. (direct current) control system of the nervous system, interference with the blood supply to the spinal cord, and imbalances in the energy network known as meridians. The manifestation of these phenomena can be associated with a diverse collection of diseases and disorders ranging from musculoskeletal aches and pains to conditions like fibromyalgia, headaches, chronic fatigue, dysfunction of the internal organs, etc. In some cases, internal disorders may improve or resolves under chiropractic care. Adjustments are not a specific treatment for any particular disease or condition other than the local effects of the subluxation itself and neurological, orthopedic, and muscular consequences of that subluxation. Nevertheless, improving the body's overall function often enables the body to effect it's own healing.

      Nervous irritation around a subluxated vertebrae and any affected nerve roots (known as facilitation) leads to exaggerated activity of the nerve, resulting in muscular tension, postural asymmetries, and limited painful motion and often visceral complaints from the viscera innervated by the irritated nerves. It is usually pain that brings patients into the chiropractor's office. We do want you to understand that the chiropractic treatments have non-specific health benefits that extend far beyond the symptomatic relief of aches and pains. The Innervation Chart shows an approximate correlation between the organs and the spinal cord levels from which their innervation is derived.

      With advances in science, an increasing emphasis on natural healing methods and a better educated populace, modern medicine is beginning to adopt more of the concepts that chiropractors have practiced for decades.

      Chiropractors treat more than just the spine. Chiropractic is a whole body healing art. Chiropractors also adjust the joints of the extremities, the cranium, the viscera, and soft tissues depending on the needs of the patient. Treatment modalities such as physical therapy, meridian therapy (acupressure or acupuncture), and clinical nutrition may also be used to facilitate the healing process. Diagnostic procedures such as x-ray; blood & amp; urine tests; kinesiological, neurological, orthopedic,and physical examination; and history taking may be used by a doctor of chiropractic to stablish a diagnosis and determine a treatment plan.

      It is important to understand that chiropractic is an art as well as a science. Because the primary treatment modality is manipulation using the human hands, it is an acquired skill. The analogy to tennis players or other skilled athletes applies. The more time and effort that is focused on developing a skill, the better one becomes. Like any other art, adjusting technique varies among practitioners in accordance with how they apply the art. No two champion tennis players play exactly the same. By virtue of the time spent in training and the time devoted to developing skills in practice, the doctor of chiropractic is the expert on therapy based on manipulation and adjustment of the human body.

      Another thing that you need to know is that there are over 200 adjusting techniques that are developed and available to doctors of chiropractic. Each doctor was trained in perhaps two or three of the primary techniques during his professional education and has acquired skills in several more in the continuing education programs following his graduation. These he combines in his treatment methods as an individual expression of his skills in manual treatment. Thus no two chiropractic physicians will adjust in exactly the same way. This is good in that it allows for diversity and the ability to adapt to meet a patients needs. It is inconvenient to regimented diagnosis and treatment, as it is difficult to prescribe "ten units of adjustments" and have it carry a standardized meaning.





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