Every year, millions of people are forced to deal with some form of aching or pain in their bodies. For most, it comes with the back, joints, or perhaps even the head. Luckily, there is a solution in the shape of chiropractic help. As a non-invasive solution, there are still many unaware of the benefits chiropractors can provide which is why we’ve created this guide here today!
At Quantum Medical and Wellness Center, Dr Popkin and the fantastic team have helped thousands of people follow a drug-free route back to full health. As well as back, head, and joint problems, it’s fair to say that chiropractic work also has a role with neck pain, asthma, bowel regularity, ear infections, improved mental clarity, surgery prevention, blood pressure, arthritis, organ function, scoliosis, and healthy pregnancy.
Sadly, we still see numerous misconceptions regarding chiropractic adjustments and we tend to find it comes from a lack of information as opposed to anything else. For example, you may not have known that most chiropractic training courses include a PhD-level year of advanced nutrition training. In this guide, we’re going to cover more of the history surrounding the techniques as well as the benefits of choosing this solution moving forward.
Chiropractic Adjustments - What Are They?
Depending on where you look, you’re likely to find different definitions of ‘chiropractic’ but it generally describes the health profession designed to diagnose, prevent, and treat issues within the musculoskeletal system. All things considered, the focus is on bringing these joints, bones, or muscles back to normal health with manual treatment such as soft-tissue manipulation or spinal adjustments.
If you look a little deeper, you might also find links with the recuperative power of the human body. For example, they might state the importance of getting the body back into a position where it can heal certain problems without requiring surgery or drugs. Essentially, this focuses on the relationship between structure and function (i.e. the spine and the nervous system). Despite popular belief, the best interest of the patient is always kept in mind which means that chiropractors will work with other health professionals wherever required.
How Does Treatment Work? - Rather than using a one-size-fits-all approach, the professionals at Quantum Medical and Wellness Center assess each case and decide upon specific chiropractic adjustments. By moving the body into the natural and proper position, the body can heal itself as a holistic approach. With the adjustments, pressure is taken away from the immune system and the excess energy is then used for maintaining homeostasis and preventing disease. Rather than dealing with the issue with drugs, chiropractors work on the whole body to ensure the issue doesn’t return again in the future.
When it comes to chiropractic work, Dr Popkin and all professionals in the craft enjoy using a solution that doesn’t require unnatural and potentially damaging drugs. Over the years, our bodies have evolved to include certain healing properties in order to survive so the chiropractor has a hand in bringing this ability to the fore.
For every organ and cell in the body, it’s controlled by the nervous system so chiropractors will focus on the alignment of the spine. Every year, we see people with a misaligned spine and this causes pressure in the body; this can be fixed with spinal alignment. Ultimately, the theory is based upon vertebral subluxation which describes irritation and mechanical compression that occurs to nerves and spinal joints when the spine is misaligned.
History of Chiropractic Solutions
After experiencing compression on the nerves leading to the ears, William Harvey Lillard became the first ever patient of this craft. With David D Palmer (commonly known as the founder of chiropractic care) in charge of the treatment, Lillard had been experiencing hearing problems for some time. To start, chiropractic adjustments were given with the main aim of reducing the compression on the nerves.
Palmer, an expert in this field, studied and researched physiology extensively and believed the hearing loss for Lillard was being caused by a spinal misalignment. As the spinal nerves in control of the inner ear were being blocked (vertebral subluxation), this treatment was suggested and Lillard decided to go ahead. After enjoying success, Palmer actually started to see more and more patients before then training other practitioners in the field. By 1897, the first ever chiropractic college was founded and it still stands today as the Palmer College of Chiropractic.
After Lillard, thousands of others were able to overcome issues that had been plaguing their lives for quite some time. All through chiropractic adjustments, people were enjoying the fixes for sciatica, gastrointestinal discomfort, and many other health problems. Thanks to the advancements in science, we’ve been able to learn just how most organs and cells in the body come back to the nerves within the spinal canal. With this in mind, a realignment of the spine and the surrounding nerves can control problems all over the body.
Should You Get Chiropractic Adjustments?
In truth, there are several causes of a vertebral subluxation including;
- Swelling in the joints originating from damage to the intervertebral joint
- Misalignment of the vertebra (from a slip or fall)
- Degenerative changes or osteoporosis in the intervertebral discs or spine
- Poor posture leading to spinal misalignment
- External causes leading to an inflammatory response (including stress, poor diet, and a lack of water)
- Tight back muscles or trigger points effectively pulling the vertebrae from its place
Good Posture - Before looking at the ten main benefits of chiropractic treatment and why you should consider contacting Quantum Medical and Wellness Center today, we first want to touch upon the importance of good posture in life. In the Western world, we tend to spend the majority of our days sitting down whether it’s in an office chair or on the sofa at home. Since this is unnatural for our spine, it causes plenty of issues.
With the introduction of mobile phones and tablets, our most prominent position now seems to be slightly hunched over and this is bringing problems of its own; namely, ‘forward head posture’ which is a known condition. With just one inch of your head sticking forward from its natural position, ten pounds is added to the neck. During simple evaluations, more and more specialists are noticing the head sitting further forward from the natural position. For the spine, this can be detrimental over the course of weeks, months, and years so we urge you to start taking notice of the way you sit and look at your phone or tablet.
Benefits of Chiropractic Adjustments
After promising many times, we’re going to delve into the many benefits of chiropractic care. As you’ll see below, we split it down into the problems chiropractic care is known for helping. Although many other professions are important, none can prevent neuromuscular-based diseases like the chiropractic profession and this is why we’re so passionate about what we do at Quantum Medical and Wellness Center.
If you have any of the problems below, feel free to get in contact with one of our experts and we’ll be happy to provide extra information or just answer some questions.
#1: Neck and Low Back Pain - Thanks to a recent study, we can actually assess the effectiveness of chiropractic techniques on neck pain and low back pain and it came out at a whopping 96%. What’s more, 98% of all participants said they would happily recommend chiropractic care to their friends if they were experiencing a similar issue.
Furthermore, we can back this up with a 2003 study where 183 participants were randomly allocated physiotherapy, manual therapy, or practitioner care after experiencing some degree of neck pain. After being treated over the course of a year, the results showed a faster recovery for chiropractic patients than both general practitioner care and physiotherapy patients. In addition to this, the patients who enjoyed chiropractic treatment paid around one-third of the money paid by the other two groups.
If we may, we’re going to point you in the direction of two more studies with the first coming from the Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics. After one month of treatment, those who were treated with chiropractic care showed more improvement than others who were treated by family physicians. In fact, the difference was notable with 53% showing improvement compared to 13%. For those who went for medical treatment, 33% of patients actually said their low-back pain was worse. In truth, we could point you in the direction of several other studies where the same outcomes are shown.
Finally, the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine wanted to test the various approaches to neck pain and 272 took part. They were split into three groups; one followed at-home exercise schedules, another was treated with spinal manipulative therapy (from a professional chiropractor), and the final group used medication including narcotics and over-the-counter solutions. Although it might not surprise you since this has been the general theme so far, a 75% reduction in pain was experienced in 52% of people who saw a chiropractor and 48% of people who exercised regularly. If we compare this to medication, only 33% of people experienced a decrease in pain after twelve weeks.
With this final study, over half of the two groups who avoided medication continued their relief from pain (around a 75% reduction). For those who took medication, the success percentage was below 40 points.
#2: Acid Reflux, Colic, and Ear Infections (in Children) - Published in Explore (a medical journal), a total of 26 articles were published in 2011 on this topic and this included four cohort studies as well as three clinical trials. Within this review, colic symptoms ‘greatly reduced’ and chiropractic care was to thank. For the author of the review, they concluded by claiming chiropractic solutions as a ‘viable alternative’ when looking to treat infantile colic.
To this point, there hasn't been too many randomized control trials when testing the effectiveness of chiropractic techniques on children. However, many case studies have taken place suggesting a resolution of acid reflux and ear infections with chiropractor intervention. In one study, children showed ‘notable improvements’ in the common symptoms within just four visits. After three months, all symptoms disappeared.
If you’re wondering why chiropractic care is useful for these ailments, experts have given several reasons and they all seem to center around the nerves located in the brain and gut and their sensitivity to neurological insult resulting from vertebral subluxation. As the spine realigns, the nerves are released somewhat and gut-brain connection improves. Thanks to medical research, we know this is true for both children and adults. With a healthier gut, this has a knock-on impact on inflammation, immune function, and reduced pain within the body.
#3: Sciatica - When it comes to chiropractic adjustments, the technique is now known for its work with sciatica so this is perhaps the biggest benefit of all. Within the European Spine Journal, a published report showed a 72% success rate for removing all sciatica-induced symptoms. Unfortunately, the ‘solutions’ doctors still recommend are corticosteroid injections (50% success rate) and physical therapy (20% success rate).
Furthermore, the Spine Journal published a double-blind trial to test stimulated chiropractic manipulations against active manipulations. Within the study, only those with sciatica nerve pain took part and they needed to be living in rehabilitation medical centers. On the whole, active manipulations were more effective and those who enjoyed this treatment had fewer days with severe back pain; other sciatica symptoms also reduced with no adverse side effects.
#4: Blood Pressure - Just over a decade ago, the well-known George Bakris decided to research hypertension and the results were published in the Human Journal of Hypertension. To the surprise of many at the time, the same effect of two blood pressure reducing drugs occurred after one chiropractic session. In fact, the results went further than this because the effects of the adjustment went on for a number of months. If we compare this to a group treated with placebo effects, the drop in systolic blood pressure was around 14mm Hg greater (this is the top number) and a drop of 8m Hg diastolic blood pressure (the bottom figure) was noted.
Ultimately, there are several studies all suggesting the same thing; one even increased low blood pressure in hypotensive patients after simple chiropractic techniques were used. After the removal of vertebral subluxations, a homeostatic balanced condition can exist and this is exciting (to say the least!).
#5: Migraines and Headaches - According to many chiropractors, headaches and migraines are the most commonly treated ailments after back pain. In recent years, the support for chiropractic care in this regard has grown significantly. In one report containing around 230 peer-reviewed articles, chiropractic care was praised for not only curing but also preventing migraines and headaches around the world.
If we look towards a medical trial, over one in five experienced a decrease in attacks by 90% after chiropractic treatment. After this, just under half experienced a ‘significant reduction’ in the pain that comes with head tension. When it comes to this problem, there’s nothing else that can achieve the results of chiropractic care while remaining completely natural and offering no side effects.
#6: Neurological Conditions - In 2017, research advanced significantly regarding the relationship between brain-based conditions and upper cervical adjustments. Although the research is still ongoing, the results we’ve seen already are impressive. Using upright MRI scans, we can see that a chiropractic adjustment can increase both blood flow and cerebral spinal fluid. Furthermore, there’s also a severe reduction in brain plaquing and cerebellar invagination which is great news for multiple sclerosis sufferers. Montel Williams, the TV presenter, actually discussed chiropractic care as an MS patient just recently.
Furthermore, evidence seems to be growing for chiropractic techniques with regards to reducing seizures and epilepsy (by correcting vertebral subluxation). In one study, fifteen pediatric patients all reported positive results after chiropractic care. As the study came to a close, it was concluded that pediatric epileptic patients ‘may’ find a non-pharmaceutical approach with chiropractic care.
#7: Preventing Surgery - For natural health care providers, chiropractic treatment has long-been a favorite for preventing back surgery and this is still true today. In the Journal of the American Medical Association, low back pain guidelines have now been submitted and there’s a recommendation for chiropractic treatment before going straight to surgery so this is a huge step forward for the industry.
#8: Scoliosis - When coupled with muscular rehab techniques, there is now evidence to suggest the prevention of scoliosis progression with specific chiropractic adjustments. Thanks to Clear Institute (a nonprofit organization), health professionals are being empowered with chiropractic systems so people with the health condition can receive the right support.
With the Clear Institute, doctors have been working towards perfecting a treatment plan for sufferers of scoliosis and it seems as though managing the issue is something that’s achievable. With this in mind, it can remove the need for potentially dangerous surgery or even restrictive braces so this is certainly positive news. So far, studies seem to suggest up to 30% decreases in scoliosis curvatures. If you suffer with scoliosis, we urge you to talk with a doctor who has been certified by the Clear Institute and you might just be offered some new solutions.
#9: Frozen Shoulder - With the impact of frozen shoulder often sitting on a scale, some people are mildly inconvenienced while others have their life taken over by the health problem. Therefore, clinical trials have tested the response of the shoulder to chiropractic care and 16 out of 50 had their issue resolved completely. After this, exactly half showed an improvement of between 75%-90% while eight people showed an improvement of 50%-75%. For those good at mental arithmetic, you’ll know this leaves just one person who experienced an improvement percentage of below 50 points.
Before the trial, participants were asked to score their pain out of ten and the average at the start was nine points while range fell between seven and ten. After treatment, the range covered zero to ten and the average fell dramatically to just two.
#10: Athletic Performance - Finally, we appreciate you’ve taken in a good amount of information today but we should also note the effectiveness of chiropractic care on athletic performance. In the past, numerous top sportsmen and women have talked positively about chiropractic care including Jerry Rice, Michael Phelps, and Joe Montana. Now, over half of all professional NFL teams hire chiropractors and players have access to exercises, adjustments, and stretches whenever they need it.
As we’ve seen here today, chiropractic care deserves attention with pathological conditions and pain-based issues. However, we shouldn't forget that it also plays a role in leading a healthy and enjoyable life from one day to the next. Thanks to many studies, we know that chiropractic care can boost the immune system, increase energy levels, reduce inflammatory cytokines, decrease oxidative stress, decrease mental stress, relieve muscle tension, and enhance pulmonary function.
Extra Benefits - Just in case you didn't think chiropractic care had enough to offer, we could also point to studies and medical trials regarding osteoarthritis, anxiety (by activating the parasympathetic nervous system), Bell’s palsy, insomnia and other sleeping issues linked with anxiety, asthma and several other respiratory problems, pregnancy back pain, all conditions tied to high inflammation, dizziness and vertigo, and ADHD.
If you want more information or have any questions, please feel free to get in touch at Quantum Medical and Wellness Center; we would love to hear from you!