Chronic back pain or back pain is a common problem affecting people of all age groups. It prevents people from living an active life and makes them depend on various medications, which may provide temporary relief but can lead to prescription painkiller dependency.
Chiropractic is an alternative medical treatment where trained specialists, called as chiropractors, use hands-on spinal manipulation and other techniques to treat back pain, neck pain and headache.
According to Web MD, chiropractic is the most preferred treatment over all the available back pain relief-related treatments. In the United States of America, approximately 22 million people visit a chiropractor annually, of which 7.7 million seek relief from back pain.
Chiropractic for pain management
The concept of chiropractic works on a simple principle - proper alignment of the body's musculoskeletal structure, especially the spine. Spinal column is made of 24 vertebrae which enable the body to move, twist, and bend. When two or more vertebrae don't function properly, they are said to be misaligned leading to pain, discomfort and other symptoms.
Chiropractic functions by correcting the structural alignments in the spine thus enabling the body to heal itself, without surgery or medication.
During chiropractic, manual spinal manipulation is used to restore the mobility of joints which are restricted by tissue injury caused by a traumatic event. It is primarily used as a pain relief treatment for muscles, bones, joints, and connective tissues.
Chiropractic for back pain
A typical chiropractic for back pain begins with recording the medical history of the patient followed by a physical examination and/or tests to find out the root cause and the suitability of the treatment. Once the pain condition is diagnosed, a treatment plan will be developed by the chiropractor.
During the treatment, the chiropractor uses hands or a small instrument to apply quick and strong pressure on a joint between two vertebrae of the spine, which would push the joint beyond its normal range of motion. One can hear popping or cracking sounds during the session caused due to the breaking of vacuum.
Depending upon the severity of pain, the treatment requires multiple visits. Besides spine manipulation, the treatment may also include other therapies such as nutritional counseling, hot and cold packs, massage treatment, exercise, electrical stimulation and weight loss treatment.
Benefits and risks associated with chiropractic
Being a natural treatment, chiropractic is safe when performed by trained and licensed professionals. Besides relieving pain from back and neck, it results in improved nerve function, joint motion and coordination, physical function and performance and improved posture.
Before the treatment, patients should disclose their medical history including their ongoing medical conditions or any current medications to avoid unnecessary risks. People with some medical conditions such as osteoporosis, spinal cord compression, arthritis, and those who take blood thinning medications are not advised to undergo chiropractic.
To expect best results from the chiropractic adjustment, one has to approach a trained, certified and experienced chiropractor.
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