What is a Chiropractic Adjustment?
A chiropractic adjustment is a manual force (HVLA- high velocity low amplitude) or low frequency force used on a joint that has a decrease in joint play (aka subluxation) vertebral joint to restore the proper motion and neuronal input to the brain and cerebellum balancing neuronal, biochemical, and spinal health.
Who Can Benefit from a Chiropractic Adjustment?
Like the universal benefits of visiting a dentist, anyone who has a spine will benefit from having a chiropractic adjustment.
Having a healthy, functioning spine and nervous system allows the body to work in its most efficient manner as it coordinates all the functions of our body. This is why we see professional athletes such as Olympians, football and baseball players, cyclists, and many other athletes to individuals that are sick and everyone in-between using and benefiting from a chiropractic lifestyle. In our office we see incredible results for athletes that are the ultra-runner, tri-athlete and weekend warrior to the individual person that walks daily. The results are just as spectacular for the “average” day to day person suffering from back pain, aches and pains, headaches, thyroid issues, fibromyalgia, and overall poor health always chalking up their symptoms up to that thing we call age. Many of our patient’s have a physiological age that is much better than their chronological age. Meaning that just because you are aging does not mean you should be or have to be sick and suffering with a multitude of different symptoms.
How does a Chiropractic Adjustment work?
Structurally speaking, the chiropractic adjustment moves the zygapophyseal joints of the vertebrae that have a decrease in joint play (subluxation). This maneuver restores the proper biomechanics to the joint allowing the spine to have greater strength, flexibility, and protection of the spinal cord. The chiropractic adjustment also inhibits or slows down any degenerative changes to the spine such as disc degeneration, disc bulges, and/or disc herniations. In essence, it is like flossing your teeth to lessen the effects of plaque buildup. It also puts a quick stretch on the muscles that attach to the spine allowing for the muscles to relax.
Neurologically speaking, the chiropractic adjustment fires off the joint receptors, muscle receptors, and tendon receptors of the spine up the spinal cord to the cerebellum. These receptors excite nerves called 1B afferents which fire into the dorsal spinal cerebellar tract and into the cerebellum. The cerebellum then fires into the brain which will fire down to the lower brainstem to slow down the upper part of the brainstem. In simpler terms, the chiropractic adjustment quiets and reverses the physiological stress response of physical, chemical, and emotional stress. For example, the chiropractic adjustment lessens the output of stress hormones such as cortisol, decreases hormones that excite pain receptors such as nor-epinephrine, and increases the body’s natural immune response. Therefore, by receiving a chiropractic adjustment, you are protecting your nervous system, restoring flexibility and support to your spine, decreasing degeneration and muscle tension throughout your body, reversing the bio-chemical reactions of the body’s stress response, relaxing your body, and increasing your immune system naturally.