The largest percentage of people looking for alternative back pain relief solutions are choosing chiropractic treatment. According to the latest statistics, about 22 million Americans seek chiropractic treatment annually. Out of these, about 7.7 million seek relief from back pain with various causes including sports injuries, accidents, as well as muscle strains. Other common complaints include pain in the legs, arms, neck, and headaches.
What does a Chiropractor do?
Chiropractors use both hands-on spinal manipulation and other alternative treatments to help align the musculoskeletal structure of the body. By doing so, the body can heal itself without the intervention of surgeries or other medications. This manipulation will help to restore mobility to joints that had been restricted by various traumatic events such as repetitive stress, falling, and sitting without proper back support.
Chiropractic is mainly used as a pain relief alternative to treat muscles, bones, joints, as well as connective tissues such as ligaments, cartilage, and tendons. Sometimes it may also be used in combination with conventional medical treatment. Chiropractors are identified by the Initials DC. To become a licensed chiropractor, you need to pursue an undergraduate degree and have four years of Chiropractic College.
What Should I Expect at My First Chiropractic Appointment?
The first thing a chiropractor does is review your medical history. Next, they will perform a physical examination, and may even use diagnostic imaging or lab testing to determine if the treatment will be effective.
The treatment itself will involve one to several manual adjustments. Here the chiropractor will manipulate the joints with sudden or controlled force to enhance the range and motion quality. Some chiropractors also include exercise rehabilitation and nutritional counseling in the treatment plan. The main goals that the chiropractic care aims to achieve include the restoration of function, alleviation of pain, and the prevention of injury.
What can Chiropractors Treat?
As mentioned earlier, chiropractic care will help in not only alleviating back pain but also easing the pain in other parts of the body, including neck pain and migraines. It can also alleviate arthritis inflammation, chronic pain, and Fibromyalgia. The good news is most insurance plans cover chiropractic care so you don’t have to live with pain. Below are some of the conditions that chiropractic treatments can help.
- Chronic back pain
- Herniated or bulging discs
- Fibromyalgia pain
- Carpal tunnel syndrome
- Torn ligaments or tendons
- Neck pain
Note: These are just some of the conditions that are treated by chiropractors. Today chiropractic care has evolved and became an essential method of non-surgical pain relief and healing various pain issues. Unlike the old days where people were hesitant to pursue chiropractic treatment, many are now embracing the trend. This is probably because they have become aware of the many benefits that the treatment has to offer.
What are the Benefits of Chiropractic Treatment?
Safe and effective in treating acute lower-back pain
Chiropractic care and spinal manipulation have been proven as safe and effective treatments for treating acute lower-back pain. This condition is a severe injury that results from lifting heavy equipment, poor back posture, or from high impact trauma. Acute back pain is more common than chronic back pain. The main difference between the two is that acute pain does not last for more than six weeks and tends to resolve on its own.
Effective in treating migraines and neck pain
There are many underlying causes of neck pain including poor sitting posture, poor sleeping posture, a fall, or being involved in an accident. Migraines may also develop due to underlying causes such as high blood pressure and many others. According to research, chiropractic care is also effective in dealing with these conditions. It works by offering deep tissue massage that soothes the tissues and muscles.
Treats chronic back pain effectively
While there are no studies that confirm the effectiveness of the sclerotherapy and prolotherapy pain relief methods used by some chiropractors, patients who have undergone these treatments claim to benefit from them, although most of them reported that the effects do not last for more than three months.
Side Effects and a Word of Caution
While chiropractic treatment works well by many accounts for treating the aforementioned conditions, patients suffering from spinal cord compression, osteoporosis, inflammatory arthritis, or those who are taking blood thinners should not opt for this treatment. Additionally, patients with a history of cancer should also obtain a clearance from their doctors before seeking chiropractic treatment.
The main objective of chiropractic care is to ensure that your back, neck, and head pain receive an accurate diagnosis and appropriate treatment. For this to occur the chiropractor needs to be accurately informed of your medical history. This should include current medications, ongoing medical conditions, surgical history, as well as lifestyle factors. Additionally, as with any other alternative treatment you should speak to your medical doctor about whether your condition may benefit from chiropractic treatment.