Chiropractic is a complete system of healthcare focused on restoring, preserving, and optimizing health by natural hands-on care.
Where conventional or “allopathic” medicine focuses on curing illness through surgery and pharmaceuticals, the goal of chiropractic is to optimize health with a non-invasive approach that does not use drugs or surgery. Chiropractic’s primary avenue of care is manipulation of the spine and the framework of the body.
A basic philosophy of chiropractic is that the body naturally seeks the proper balance among all the systems of the body, and that these systems are meant to work together. A second basic principle is that proper structure is necessary for proper function. If a structure is impaired by injury or stress, its function can be adversely affected.
For example, when our spine (structure) is not positioned normally, it can irritate the nerves exiting the spine. And when spinal nerves are irritated, they don’t function normally and can affect the function of the tissues they interact with. This “end-organ” effect is the central interest in chiropractic care. The relief of localized discomfort at the point of irritation is also an objective of care.
Thus chiropractic focuses on the integrity of the spine and its surrounding tissues as a means to enhance normal human function and health.
What truly differentiates doctors of chiropractic from any other healthcare professionals is the fact that chiropractors are the only professionals who are trained to diagnose and treat what are called spinal subluxations. The word “subluxation” comes from the Latin words meaning “somewhat or slight" (sub) and “to dislocate” (luxate). So the term ‘spinal subluxation’ literally means a slight dislocation or misalignment of the bones in the spine. When a spinal subluxation occurs, a chiropractor can correct the misaligned bone and allow it to return to its proper position. This procedure is appropriately called an adjustment, and the adjustment enables the body to heal. Adjustments are often accompanied by an audible release of gas that sounds like a “crack.” The sound sometimes shocks people a little bit the first couple times they get adjusted, but the sensation is usually relieving. Occasionally, minor discomfort is experienced, especially if the surrounding muscles are in spasm or the patient tenses up during the chiropractic procedure.
There are five components that contribute to the spinal subluxation.
Bone Component - where the vertebra is either out of position, not moving properly, or are undergoing degeneration. This frequently leads to a narrowing of the spaces between the bones through which the nerves pass; often resulting in irritation or squeezing of the nerve, what is sometimes called radiculitis.
Nervous Component - is the disruption of the normal flow of energy or information along the nerve fibers, causing the messages traveling along the nerves to become distorted or in extreme cases stopped. The result is that all of the tissues that are fed by those nerves receive distorted signals from the brain and, consequently, are not able to function normally. If this were to happen to the nerves that supply a muscle or a joint your ability to control the movement of that area would be distorted. Over time, this can contribute to a whole host of conditions, such as pain, spasm, peptic ulcers, constipation and other organ and endocrine system dysfunction. If nerves are being irritated in another area they can also cause spinal subluxation, problems can travel either way on the nerves. An example of this would be the carpal tunnel in the wrist. So you have pain in the wrist and hand from the carpal tunnel being misaligned this can cause spinal subluxation in the neck and the pain that goes with it.
Muscular Component - since nerves control the muscles that help hold the vertebrae in place, muscles have to be considered to be an integral part of the spinal subluxation. In fact, muscles both affect, and are affected by the spinal subluxation. A spinal subluxation can irritate a nerve, the irritated nerve can cause a muscle to spasm, the spasmed muscle pulls the attached vertebrae further out of place, which then further irritates the nerve and you have a vicious cycle.
Soft Tissue Component - the spinal subluxation will also affect the surrounding tendons, fascia, ligaments, blood supply, and other tissues as the misaligned vertebrae tug and squeeze the connective tissue. Over time, the soft tissues can become stretched out or scarred and adhesed, leaving the spine with either a permanent instability or restriction.
Chemical Component - is the change in the chemistry of the body due to the spinal subluxation. Most often, the chemical changes, such as the release of a class of chemicals called “kinins,” are pro-inflammatory; meaning that they increase inflammation in the affected area.
Chiropractic Care in Truckee
We provide advanced BODY correction utilizing "state of the art" chiropractic techniques. Never in the history of chiropractic have we been able to provide the level of help and expertise that now exists. These newer correction methods are even safer, more comfortable and more effective than ever before. As a Doctor of Chiropractic, in Truckee, Ca I have over 20 years of training and experience in the spinal adjustment. My techniques included hands on adjusting via Diversified, Gonstead, with more gentle techniques such as SOT (SacralOccipital), Activator, and soft tissue work. My initial training was 5000 hours of education That is after receiving a bachelor’s degree. Then another 20 years of training. I use traditional diagnostic testing methods. History taking, Both high tech, high cost (such as x-rays, MRI, and lab blood work) and low tech, low cost like orthopedic, neurological, exams, outcome assessments, muscular evaluations along with specific chiropractic techniques that involve hands-on manipulation of the articulations (joints) of the body. Some chiropractors like me, also offer nutrition and healthy lifestyle counseling. Chiropractors elect not to prescribe medications, and we do not perform surgery; however, many chiropractors work closely with medical doctors and will refer a patient when necessary. Additional resources are the American Chiropractic Association and the California Chiropractic Association