Chiropractic Adjustments & Techniques
Chiropractic treatment is a noninvasive method of natural healing. It emphasizes the immediate connection between the structure of the spine and the nervous system, with the belief that when spinal health is at its peak the rest of the body will also operate to its full potential.
Using chiropractic adjustments and various techniques, a chiropractor can alleviate acute and chronic conditions, promote overall wellness, and provide an improved lifestyle. Chiropractic treatments are becoming increasingly popular among patients seeking alternative health care and pain relief from symptoms such as back pain, neck pain, headaches, sciatica, and many other conditions.
What is a Chiropractic Adjustment?
At ChiroCare of Florida, many of our highly experienced chiropractors have over 20 years of experience performing adjustments. A chiropractic adjustment, also known as chiropractic manipulation or spinal manipulation, is the most sought after chiropractic treatment to alleviate pain and prevent future injuries to the neck and back.
A chiropractic adjustment involves applying pressure to the vertebrae of the spine in order to reduce the misalignment of the vertebrae, referred to as subluxation. This process increases range of motion, improves function, reduces nerve irritability, and alleviates pain.
Chiropractic adjustments are effective in realigning the spine such that it can heal itself and improve its strength, without the addition of harmful drugs or surgery. Adjustments aid in posture and range of mobility, as well as assist in the decompression of the spine. Likewise, adjustments can decrease the amount of stress that is placed on the immune system, freeing up energy to be used to maintain homeostasis.
Not only will this process benefit overall health and wellness, but adjustments aim to enhance a patient’s ability to move and perform, while improving their overall quality of life.
What to Expect from a Chiropractic Adjustment
During a chiropractic adjustment, you can expect:
- A short, swift lever arm thrust applied to a vertebra by the chiropractor.
- A pleasant sensation; it may be the first time in years that normal nerve flow has returned to areas of the body without interference.
- Feeling more limber and relaxed immediately following adjustment.
As the body begins to heal after an adjustment, you may feel:
- Possible minor soreness in the area that has been adjusted: Your muscles have been trained to support your spine improperly. Once the spine has been adjusted, your muscles will need to adjust as well.
- Possible light-headed sensation: Not all patients experience this. However, this is a sign that the brain is receiving an influx of nerve impulses from areas that it may not have been able to reach for years. This should only last a few minutes, but it is a sign that the body has already begun healing itself.
Why Are Chiropractic Adjustments Important?
Your spine is arranged like dominoes: 23 vertebrae are stacked one on top of each other, separated by spinal discs and supported by facet joints. When two or more vertebra aren’t functioning properly as a unit, this is known as a subluxation or misalignment. These subluxations disrupt the natural arrangement of your spine and can cause various degrees of pain, from discomfort to decreased mobility, and more.
Joint dysfunctions in the spine can cause miscommunication between the body and brain, leading to symptoms in other parts of the body. If the discs that support your vertebrae slip or become damaged, they will place pressure on your spinal nerves resulting in pain and discomfort that can spread throughout the body.
Chiropractic adjustments are a natural, noninvasive method of realigning your spine. With chiropractic adjustments, vertebrae, discs, and joints that have fallen out of alignment can be placed back in their respective places. Spinal manipulation is a more conservative method of healing the often debilitating pain that accompanies spinal subluxation, that also offers little to no recovery time and almost immediate improvement in mobility.
Routine chiropractic care does much more than alleviate current symptoms, as it can help prevent future problems from occurring as well as promote overall health and wellness within the body. Visit one of ChiroCare of Florida’s eleven offices around the South Florida area to learn more about how routine chiropractic care can benefit you.
Do I Need a Chiropractic Adjustment?
If you suffer from symptoms such as joint pain, back aches, or headaches, you may benefit from regular chiropractic adjustments. Chiropractic adjustments are a holistic, non-invasive approach to treat a variety of conditions.
Chiropractic adjustments can help heal the body naturally, and improve ailments such as:
- Back pain
- Neck pain
- Ear infections
- Blood pressure
- Pregnancy-related pains and posture problems
- Organ function
Many conditions can benefit from chiropractic adjustments. If you’re unsure of whether or not your needs can be fulfilled through chiropractic care, contact a professional at ChiroCare of Florida today. Together, we can discuss your individual needs and work out the best treatment option for you.
Benefits of Chiropractic Adjustments
The benefits of regular chiropractic adjustments will vary from person to person, depending on your specific needs, symptoms and conditions. However, common benefits of routine chiropractic adjustments include the following:
- Improved nerve communication in the body
- Increased joint motion and coordination
- Corrected posture
- Improved physical function
- Boosted athletic performance
- Enhanced sleep cycle
- Alleviate back and neck pain
- Lessen leg, knee, ankle, and foot pain
- Relief from arm, wrist, shoulders, and elbow pain
- Decrease the effects of stress and tension disorders
- Mitigate joint discomfort
- Diminish pain from chronic injuries
- Relief from arthritis
Accompanying Chiropractic Techniques Used in Treatment
In addition to adjustments, a chiropractor will often utilize a variety of other techniques to assist in treatment. At ChiroCare of Florida, your chiropractor will tailor a treatment plan to benefit your specific needs, depending on your symptoms and the severity of your condition. Treatment plans typically utilize a variety of non-invasive therapies that stimulate healing, promote wellness, and alleviate pain.
Flexion and extension is typically performed when a patient is experiencing a herniated disc. Under stress or vigorous activity a disc can rupture,and the gel-like material that comprises its center begins to leak through the crack. This presses on the spinal nerves, resulting in pain. To lessen pain and help coax the disc back into its respective state, a chiropractor will utilize the flexion/extension technique.
Flexion/extension is also referred to as the Cox Technique after its developer, Dr. James Cox. This technique requires a specifically designed table, which will allow a chiropractor to adjust its different sections in order to neutralize the effect of gravity on the body. A chiropractor will then apply gentle pressure to the affected areas, slowly and in a repeated range of normal motions.
This technique increases the disc space between vertebrae, decompresses the spinal column, and restores spinal joints to their proper alignment. The result is relief of herniated disc pain and promoted healing for the affected joints and disc. Unlike adjustments, the flexion/extension technique does not utilize any quick thrusts and relies instead on slow, gentle pressure. Flexion and extension techniques do require very precise motions, therefore, for optimal results always visit a certified ChiroCare of Florida office for your treatment.
Electric Stimulation therapy, also known as E-stim, is a treatment that can be incorporated into a variety of treatment plans. E-stim delivers brief electric pulses onto an affected area via small electrodes that are placed on top of the skin. The pulses cause a muscle to contract and relax, resulting in a state of fatigue that will relieve muscles that have been suffering tension or strain.
E-stim is suitable for pain throughout the body, as electrodes can be placed almost anywhere on the skin to relax the muscles underneath. Your chiropractor would recommend E-stim therapy as a technique in your treatment plan if you’ve suffered tense muscles, have experienced a strain, or are experiencing inflammation in your muscles, joints, or ligaments.
The Graston Technique is an evidenced back form of Instrument Assisted Soft Tissue Manual Therapy (IASTM). As its name suggests, IASTM is used to rearrange soft tissue that has suffered a type of trauma, such as a strained muscle, a pulled tendon, or further soft tissue damage. The Graston Technique utilizes technology that painlessly stretches connective tissue to promote better and faster healing, reduce inflammation, and alleviate pain. At ChiroCare of Florida, we most commonly incorporate this state of the art technology into treatment plan for patients who are experiencing pain within muscles or have recently suffered whiplash.
Rapid Release Technology (RRT)
Rapid Release Technology (RRT) is an excellent option to combat pain naturally and drug-free. RRT uses a hand-held tool to issue vibrational waves in the affected area to break down muscle tightness and scar tissues, resulting in less tension and reduced pain. This process drastically alleviates discomfort, relaxes muscle spasms, and improves range of motion.
RRT is typically an option for patients who are suffering from:
- Sports injuries
- Back pain
- Neck pain
- Tennis elbow
- Frozen shoulder
- Trapped nerves
However, it can be incorporated into most tailor-made treatment plans as an excellent pain resource.
Kinesiology Therapeutic Tape
Kinesiology therapeutic tape (KT) is typically used to alleviate pain and injury. Made of stretchy, light and thin fabric, kinesiology tape is placed upon an area of the body that is experiencing inflammation and swelling due to injury caused by impact or overuse. KT Tape lifts the skin, which in turn decompresses the layers of tissue underneath and allows fluid to easily pass through the area. This results in decreased inflammation and reduced pressure to the tissue, which also helps to alleviate discomfort.
KT Tape also provides support to muscles, tendons, and ligaments. This is because correct taping methods improve a muscle’s ability to contract, helping it to not over-extend or over-contract. KT Tape is often used among athletes and is often spotted at major sporting events, such as the Summer Olympics, but can be used with any patient recovering from an injury. Ask your ChiroCare of Florida chiropractor about KT Tape for a one-of-a-kind, pro-athlete treatment.
Activator Method Technique
The Activator Method is a technique that incorporates a small, hand-held device called an Activator Adjusting Instrument, which delivers a subtle impulse force to the spine. Essentially, the Activator Method is a device-assisted alternative for manual adjustments. For both, the goal is to restore motion to the specified vertebrae or joints.
A ChiroCare of Florida chiropractor will choose to incorporate the Activator Method technique to your treatment plan to treat a variety of ailments, including back pain, neck pain, and chronic headaches.
Sacro Occipital Technique
The Sacro Occipital Technique (SOT) focuses on the sacrum, the base of the spine, and the occiput, the base of the skull. SOT is based on the theory that cranial bones and their surrounding structures can cause issues within the central nervous system when they are misaligned.
Therefore, SOT restores proper function to the body by stabilizing the cranium, spine, and pelvis through a combined use of spinal and cranial adjustments, soft tissue manipulation, pelvic stabilization, and neurological balancing. Pain in the lower back, neck, discs, and nerves all serve as excellent reasons for your ChiroCare of Florida chiropractor to incorporate SOT into your treatment.
Simply defined, neuromuscular re-education is the technique for improving coordination, balance, and movement. Neuromuscular re-education is used to treat conditions that arise from faulty nerve and muscle activities. Most soft tissue injuries, including sprains, tears, and tension, can benefit from neuromuscular re-education.
Neuromuscular re-education consists of specific therapeutic exercises that a chiropractor will assist you in performing. These prove to be beneficial for individuals who have developed unhealthy movement patterns after injury, including limping or poor posture. If you’ve recently suffered a major injury, it can be expected that your chiropractor will incorporate this technique into your treatment plan.
Postural imbalances can be the result of an injury, but they can also simply be a part of how your body has adjusted to carrying itself. For example, though you may develop a limp as a result of a leg or hip injury, one shoulder might be higher than the other strictly because you’ve always carried yourself that way.
Overtime, poor posture can have a negative effect on the spine and central nervous system. A chiropractor can issue a series of therapeutic postural exercises as well as spinal manipulations to correct postural problems. In order to deduce if you are a candidate for postural correction, your chiropractor will perform a series of tests before moving forward.
At ChiroCare of Florida, whether you’re suffering old injuries or scoliosis, our chiropractors have a proven history of developing effective treatment plans.
In addition to manual adjustments, manual therapy is a common technique used by chiropractors. Manual therapy typically focuses on the soft tissue. With manual therapy, pressure is applied to soft tissue such as muscle, ligaments, and tendons, to increase circulation, break up scar tissue, and alleviate pain. Additionally, manual therapy relaxes tension in muscles.
Most patients benefit from the addition of manual therapy in their treatment plans. Often, chiropractors will perform manual therapy before the adjustment, after the adjustment, or both.
Though most everyone stretches in some form daily, not everyone is stretching properly. Attempting certain stretches with subluxations, herniated discs, or even sciatica can prove to be more painful or do more harm than good. A chiropractor will teach you proper stretching techniques to alleviate pain and promote healing.
Benefits of stretching include:
- Increase energy
- Improve circulation
- Reduce stress levels
- Improve posture
- Relieve post-exercise aches
Stretching daily can improve joint health and relieve stiff muscles. Your ChiroCare of Florida chiropractor will most likely include this in your treatment plan.
Experience the Power of Chiropractic Healing
With regular appointments, chiropractic adjustments offer a host of preventative health benefits, and are essential for a balanced, flexible, and overall well-functioning body.
ChiroCare of Florida’s experienced and caring chiropractors are dedicated to helping you return to your everyday life pain free. Even if you require prolonged chiropractic care, the professionals at ChiroCare of Florida are here to help you every step of the way.