Living Pain-Free: The Role of Chiropractic Care in Pain Management
Pain relief is a primary reason why people seek chiropractic care. It is a medical profession that has been around for over 100 years. It is a holistic form of treatment that is effective for many types of pain, including back pain and neck pain, as well as systemic chronic conditions like fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome. A chiropractor’s main role is to assess a patient’s condition and create a customized therapy plan for non-invasive treatments. This often includes spinal manipulation through manual techniques, postural correction exercises and other therapeutic modalities. The goal is to reduce a patient’s reliance on drugs or surgery for pain management.
Chiropractors, known by the initials DC, treat muscles, bones and joints (such as the knees and wrists). They also manipulate soft tissue such as cartilage, ligaments and tendons. Chiropractic principles state that everything that happens to a person affects the nerves in their body. Pain results when the nerves are blocked by a bone, muscle, joint or other structure that is not moving correctly or is over-stressed.
A common pain problem that chiropractic treatment is used to address is herniated discs. A herniated disc causes back pain when the disc pushes on a nerve in the spine. A chiropractor may use spinal mobilization to gently stretch and relax the tissues surrounding a herniated disc, removing pressure on the nerve and alleviating pain.
In addition to manual therapies, many chiropractors also employ therapeutic modalities, such as cold laser therapy or ultrasound, to help manage a patient’s pain and increase healing. Some therapists even incorporate acupressure and breathing techniques into their treatment plans.
Patients with a herniated disc or other serious health condition should always consult with a medical doctor before receiving chiropractic treatment. Some medical conditions that can be worsened by spinal manipulation include osteoporosis, spinal cord compression and inflammatory arthritis. In addition, people who take blood thinners should not receive spinal manipulation.
Another way in which a chiropractor can help manage pain is to encourage patients to make lifestyle changes that can prevent future injuries and reduce pain. They can recommend healthy eating habits, exercise programs, ergonomic adjustments to work areas and sleep schedules that can improve posture and reduce stress. Chiropractors can even recommend hypnosis to help relieve the anxiety that is sometimes associated with chronic pain.
A visit to a licensed chiropractor can help a patient find the right pain management strategy and possibly get them across the finish line of full recovery. Persistent pain shouldn’t stop you from living life to the fullest. If you’re interested in learning more about the benefits of chiropractic care, join me and other experts for the free Living Pain-Free Summit.