10 Advantages of Chiropractic Care
At least 70 million adults in the United States are suffering from chronic pain. In fact, low back pain is the second most common reason Americans visit a doctor.
Many people are looking for pain relief alternatives to medication. Chiropractic treatment is one possible pain management option, particularly if you have back or neck pain.
In this article, we’ll go over 10 of the most important advantages of receiving chiropractic care, as well as how to find the right chiropractor for you.
What exactly is chiropractic care?
Chiropractic care is a complementary medicine practice that believes your body can heal itself with the assistance of specific hands-on manipulations performed by a trained professional. These manipulations help realign your joints and may result in pain relief.
Chiropractic care may help relieve pain caused by conditions affecting your:
- connective tissue
Chiropractic treatment frequently focuses on your spine, but it may also focus on other parts of your body depending on the specific issue you’re experiencing.
Chiropractic treatment is similar to physical therapy in some ways, and certain conditions may benefit from both types of therapy.
Chiropractors, in general, are more likely to use hands-on manipulations to relieve your symptoms. Physical therapists place a greater emphasis on rehabilitating injuries through stretches and exercises.
What are the advantages of chiropractic treatment?
1. Relieves neck pain
Neck pain is a common complaint, particularly if you sit for long periods of time, frequently bend your neck to use your phone, or have poor posture. A chiropractor can help relieve neck pain by realigning your spine and relaxing your neck muscles.
An older study from 2012 discovered that 12 weeks of spinal manipulation was more effective than medication in treating non-specific neck pain in a group of 272 adults at 8-, 12-, 26-, and 52-week follow-ups.
According to a 2019 study cervical spine manipulation, according to Trusted Source, may help reduce neck pain in the short term by modifying neuropeptide levels in your blood. Neuropeptides are proteins that are produced in your nervous system and act as neurotransmitters or hormones.
2. Lessens the need for opioid pain relievers
Chronic pain patients are frequently prescribed opioid pain relievers to help them manage their discomfort. However, chiropractic treatment may reduce your need for these pain relievers.
A major 2020 study Trusted Source compared the number of opioid pain reliever prescriptions filled for adults who saw only their doctor or both a chiropractor and their doctor to treat spinal pain.
The study discovered that adults who saw a chiropractor were less likely to fill an opioid prescription for their pain than those who only saw their doctor.
3. Relieves back pain
For treating short-term or chronic back pain, chiropractic treatment may be a good alternative to more invasive treatments such as surgery or injections.
The American College of Physicians recommends that doctors encourage people suffering from chronic low back pain to seek non-medication treatments first before resorting to medication. Some of the recommended treatments are:
- Spinal manipulation (chiropractic care)
- Tai chi
- Progressive muscle relaxation
A study review published in 2017 Spinal manipulation was associated with moderate improvements in short-term back pain and function compared to placebo treatment for up to 6 weeks, according to Trusted Source.
4. Possible improvement in osteoarthritis symptoms
Osteoarthritis pain is caused by cartilage degeneration in a joint, which causes the ends of your bones to rub together. Some chiropractic adjustments may help align your joints and reduce the amount of time your bones rub together.
There hasn’t been much research conducted on the benefits of chiropractic manipulation for osteoarthritis. A 2020 animal study, on the other hand According to Trusted Source, chiropractic manipulation may help slow the progression of arthritis by improving the condition of cartilage, bone, and the joint capsule.
5. Reduces the severity of headache symptoms
Tension headaches and headaches that originate in your neck may benefit from spinal manipulation.
According to a 2016 study Trusted Source, 6 to 8 sessions of cervical and upper thoracic spine manipulation were more effective than movement and exercise in relieving pain in people suffering from chronic headaches. This was still true three months later.
6. More affordable chronic back pain treatment
Chiropractic care may be a less expensive alternative to traditional treatment for chronic low back pain.
Researchers examined the potential financial benefits of chiropractic treatment for Medicare recipients with chronic back pain in a 2016 study.
The researchers discovered that patients who received chiropractic care had lower overall treatment costs. The study also discovered that their treatment time was shorter than that of those who received traditional medical treatment.
7. High level of satisfaction
In general, studies have found that chiropractic treatment results in relatively high levels of satisfaction.
In a 2015 study Trusted Source, for example, researchers discovered that a group of 544 people receiving chiropractic care reported a high level of satisfaction.
In addition, 92 percent of those in this study reported pain relief, and 80 percent reported an improvement in their ability to move around.
8. Scoliosis symptoms are reduced
Chiropractic care may help people with scoliosis improve their Cobb angle. The Cobb angle is a measurement of the amount of side-to-side deformity in the spine.
A 2016 study Trusted Source discovered that after 8 weeks of chiropractic treatment, the Cobb angle in a group of five children with scoliosis improved. After 4 weeks of treatment, there were noticeable improvements.
9. Aids in the improvement of posture
Chiropractic treatment may help correct poor posture, especially if your poor posture is caused by excessive sitting.
A 2017 case study Trusted Source investigated the effect of chiropractic treatment on a 27-year-old woman suffering from hyperkyphosis posture-related back pain, neck pain, and headaches. A hunchback posture is another term for hyperkyphosis.
She showed a significant improvement in her posture and pain relief in both her head and neck after 30 treatments spread out over 6 months.
10. Could improve athletic performance
Spinal adjustments may help you perform better in sports. This could be because of improved joint mobility, less pain, and less tissue restriction.
However, there are still some doubts about whether spinal adjustments improve athletic performance. According to a 2019 review of studies Trusted Source, it did not improve performance in people who did not have symptoms.
When used to treat pain caused by an injury, chiropractic adjustments may be effective.
Chiropractors have what kind of certification and training?
Chiropractors must complete a postgraduate degree known as a Doctor of Chiropractic (DC). It typically takes four years to complete. Admission requires at least 90 semester hours of undergraduate coursework, with some programs requiring a bachelor’s degree.
Chiropractors must also be licensed in every state. State licensing requirements vary, but all states require a chiropractor to pass the National Board of Chiropractic Examiners exams.
Some chiropractors specialize in a specific area of chiropractic treatment and then complete a residency program for several years.
How to Locate a Chiropractor
The American Chiropractic Association estimates that there are over 70,000 chiropractors in the United States.
Here are some ideas to help you find a qualified chiropractor in your area:
- Ask your doctor, physical therapist, or other healthcare providers for recommendations.
- Ask your friends, coworkers, and family members for recommendations.
- Confirm that your chiropractor is licensed by the chiropractic board in your state.
- Use the American Chiropractic Association’s Find a Doctor tool to locate a chiropractor.
- Before beginning treatment, schedule a consultation with a chiropractor to see if they are a good fit. If you don’t think a chiropractor is right for you, don’t feel obligated to continue seeing them. It is acceptable to consult with several chiropractors before deciding on the best one for your needs.