Chiropractic and joint health

Chiropractic adjustments are intended to maintain health joint motion. Motion of the joints is essential to maintaining the health of the joint surfaces and connective tissues. Adhesions are scar tissue like tissues that limit the motion of the joints. Adhesions may be caused by injury or by immobilization. Untreated back injuries often result in reduced motion of the joints and the formation of adhesions. Immobilization of a joint causes dehydration of the linings of the joint and causing the linings of the joint to stick together. Chiropractic adjustments increase movement in dehydrated joints and help to release adhesions promoting joint health and movement.

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Chiropractic Back Pain Treatments

Traction is a common technique for the treatment of lower back pain by Chiropractors. Traction (in theory) reduces pressure on the disc and reduces the effects of disc herniation. The commonly used Chiropractic technique of lumbar traction (lumbar flexion distraction) was developed in the 70s. The flexion distraction table bends at the waist while lying on the stomach. The effect is to traction the joints of the lower back (lumbar spine). Traction of this type is also helpful in most types of lower back pain as well as scoliosis and other types of back injuries. Traction is also helpful when combined with myofascial release in the treatment of lower back pain. The pelvic tilt is an easy exercise that is similar to the effects of the flexion distraction traction table.

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The spine and Chiropractic

The spine is composed of 26 vertebrae as well as supporting muscles, ligaments and nerves. The spine functions ask a flexible framework to support the body and as an attachment for the muscles. The spine also protects the nerves and organs. The nerves exit the spinal column through flexible spaces called intervertebral foramen.
A subluxation is an abnormal functioning joint that may interfere with the conduction of nerve impulses out of the spine. The nerves are not directly pinched by the bones of the spine but rather are irritated by the lack of motion at the spinal joints. Chiropractic adjustments seek to correct the lack of motion in the joints (subluxation).
A subluxation may be caused by an injury such as falling or by a buildup of stress in the joints. Correcting a subluxation with Chiropractic adjustments allows the body to naturally heal itself by removing interference to the nervous system.

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What is Chiropractic?

Chiropractic care is manual therapy that focuses on the biomechanical function of the spinal joints and the joints of the extremities. Biomechanical dysfunction of the joints can effect the entire nervous system and effect strength, coordination, and balance. Chiropractic care uses specific hand contacts and positions to return stuck joints back to their normal function. Motion of the joints is a very important input to the nervous system and helps the body regulate itself. Chiropractic corrects dysfunctional joints and allows the body to right itself naturally.

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Neck and back conditions-Thoracic outlet syndrome

The condition known as thoracic outlet syndrome often produces a diffuse irritation of the arm as well as numbness and tingling in the arm. Usually the numbness runs down the inside of the arm and down to the ring finger and little finger. Usually the condition is made worse with overhead activity.
The cause of thoracic outlet may involve several areas. First, tight muscles in the side of the neck may come into play. The scalene muscles in the side of the neck may irriate the nerves of the arm (brachial plexus) and cause symptoms in the arm. The pectorals are also known to be involved with thoracic outlet. Often the upper ribs are involved with impinging the brachial plexus. Often muscular compression of the brachial plexus is associated with seated positions at work and forward head position. In some cases and injury may be associated with the start of symptoms.
Chiropractic management of thoracic outlet is often very effective. Postural correction is an important factor as well. The forward head position which is very common in office and other types of work is often a contributory factor. Stretching of the muscles of the chest and side of the neck is valuable as well. Generally, exercises for thoracic outlet should focus on the strengthening of the muscles of the back and stretching of the muscles of the chest. Neck extension exercises may also be beneficial for thoracic outlet syndrome. Myofascial release to the scalene muscles (the side of the neck) is highly recommended as well. Chiropractic manipulation of the first rib on the side of irritation is also known as an effective procedure. Most often conservative management is effective with relatively few people needed to go on to consult an Orthopedist.

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