It is estimated that about 27 million Americans visit a doctors of chiropractic each year, and millions more receive chiropractic care throughout the rest of the world. Chiropractic is the third largest primary health care field (after medicine and dentistry).
Chiropractic is a branch of the healing arts which is based upon the understanding that good health depends, in part, upon a normally functioning nervous system (especially the spine, and the nerves extending from the spine to all parts of the body).
"Chiropractic" comes from the Greek word Chiropraktikos, meaning "effective treatment by hand." Chiropractic stresses the idea that the cause of many disease processes begins with the body's inability to adapt to its environment.
It looks to address these diseases not by the use of drugs and chemicals, but by locating and adjusting a musculoskeletal area of the body which is functioning improperly.
The conditions which doctors of chiropractic address are as varied and as vast as the nervous system itself.
We use a standard procedure of examination to diagnose a patient's condition and arrive at a course of treatment. Chiropractors use the same time-honored methods of consultation, case history, physical examination, laboratory analysis and x-ray examination as any other doctor. In addition, they provide a careful chiropractic structural examination, paying particular attention to the spine.
The examination of the spine to evaluate structure and function is what makes chiropractic different from other health care procedures. Your spinal column is a series of movable bones which begin at the base of your skull and end in the center of your hips. Thirty-one pairs of spinal nerves extend down the spine from the brain and exit through a series of openings. The nerves leave the spine and form a complicated network which influences every living tissue in your body.
Accidents, falls, stress, tension, overexertion, and countless other factors can result in a displacements or derangements of the spinal column, causing irritation to spinal nerve roots. These irritations are often what cause malfunctions in the human body. Chiropractic teaches that reducing or eliminating this irritation to spinal nerves can cause your body to operate more efficiently and more comfortably.
We also places an emphasis on nutritional and exercise programs, wellness and lifestyle modifications for promoting physical and mental health. While chiropractors make no use of drugs or surgery, Doctors of chiropractic do refer patients for medical care when those interventions are indicated. In fact, chiropractors, medical doctors, physical therapists and other health care professionals now work as partners in occupational health, sports medicine, and a wide variety of other rehabilitation
Scoliosis is a medical term that refers to spinal curvatures. Scoliosis is a condition that almost always begins in early childhood. And it is exceedingly rare. In fact, only about 5 out of 1,000 American children usually develop curved spines enough to warrant treatment. Scoliosis affects only 1 percent of the world's population.
In normal children, the spinal column grows in a straight line from the neck down to the tailbone. Curved spines have an abnormal sideways bend. In other words, looking at tieback from behind, the spine of a child with scoliosis will curve to the left or right, instead of going straight down. If a child with scoliosis is not treated for the condition, it could later cause chronic pain, a deformed spine, poor posture, and in some cases, heart, lung, or gastrointestinal problems.
A curved spine is one that fails to develop normal front-to-back arches, causing undue weight to be carried on the vertebral discs. If a disc or vertebra shifts to one side or another, the spine may follow.
There are many causes of scoliosis. The birth event, or even daily activities, may cause vertebrae to become misaligned, a condition called subluxation. In some cases, scoliosis can be inherited as a result of a short leg or pelvic distortion. Some early childhood diseases also have been linked as possible contributors to scoliosis. Some think children are forced to walk at too early an age before their spines fully develop.
Scoliosis rarely has symptoms associated with it. Most children with curved spines do not complain of pain. So it is important to have your child examined by a medical professional if you suspect he or she has a curved spine.
Chiropractic care, including spinal manipulation, can be an effective means to stem further spine curvature, and in some cases, even reverse the damage. In addition, back braces, which have become technologically advanced and lightweight, may assist the spine in returning to its normal straight position. Only about 10 percent of those with scoliosis eventually require surgical treatment.