Chiropractic Care for Back Pain

Chiropractic treatment is the most popular choice for back pain relief. An estimated 22 million Americans see a chiropractor each year. 3.5% of these people visit chiropractors each year to get relief from back pain. This includes injuries sustained in sports, accidents, and muscle strains. Other complaints include pain in the neck, arms, and legs and headaches.

What is Chiropractic Care?

Chiropractic care includes spinal manipulation, as well as other treatments. According to the theory, proper alignment of the body’s muscles and skeletal system, especially the spine, will allow the body to heal without the need for surgery or medication. Manipulation can be used to restore mobility to damaged joints due to tissue injury, such as falling or sitting without proper support.

Chiropractic treatment is used primarily as a pain relief option for muscles, joints, and bones. Sometimes, it is used in combination with traditional medical treatment.

The initials “DC”, which stands for Doctor of Chiropractic, identify a chiropractor. Their education usually includes an undergraduate degree and four years of chiropractic college.

What does Chiropractic Treatment for Back Pain entail?

First, a chiropractor will take your medical history and perform a physical exam. If necessary, they may also use diagnostic imaging or lab tests to determine the appropriate treatment for your back pain.

One or more manual adjustments may be used to treat the condition. This involves the doctor manipulating the joints using controlled, sudden force. Many chiropractors also incorporate nutritional counseling and exercise/rehabilitation into the treatment plan. Chiropractic care aims to restore function and prevent injury, as well as provide pain relief.

What are the benefits and risks of chiropractic care?

Acute low back pain is caused by a sudden injury such as a fall or a bump that causes the spine to move. Chiropractic care and spinal manipulation are safe and effective. Acute back pain is less common than chronic pain and usually resolves on its own.

Chiropractic care has been shown to be effective in relieving neck pain and headaches. The moderate pressure applied by both chiropractors as well as deep tissue massage practitioners may also be helpful in treating osteoarthritis or fibromyalgia.

Some chiropractors, osteopaths, and medical doctors use prolotherapy and sclerotherapy to relieve chronic back pain. This is the pain that can come on suddenly, gradually, or last more than three months. Studies have not proven the effectiveness of this treatment. Injections of sugar water or anesthetic are used to strengthen the ligaments in your back.

Spinal manipulation should not be performed on people who are suffering from osteoporosis, spinal compression, inflammatory arthritis, or those who take blood-thinning medication. Patients with a history or cancer must first get clearance from their doctor before they undergo spinal manipulation.

The diagnosis of your back pain is the basis for all treatment. Your medical history should include current medications, lifestyle factors, and traumatic/surgical history. There have been rare cases where treatment caused a herniated disc to slip or worsen, or neck manipulation led to a spinal injury. Always consult your doctor before you decide whether chiropractic or any other pain relief options are available for your condition.

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