The spinal adjustment is a specialty of chiropractors and is one of the main focuses in their education. No other health profession performs or is educated to perform such a specific maneuver. Chiropractors pride themselves on being very specific when performing the adjustment and general “spinal manipulation” by health care professionals who are not chiropractors is often done for different reasons and is not held to the same standard.
How does the adjustment work?
The adjustment is administered into areas where spinal bones, or vertebrae, are not in the proper position or lack normal movement. When these spinal bones are not in the proper position or lack normal movement the nerves that exit between them to send messages and receive messages are not allowed to function as efficiently. The adjustment is a safe, comfortable and effective procedure to put motion back into the joint that is malfunctioning in order to restore proper nerve function at that specific level.
What is subluxation?
Subluxation is a term used by many chiropractors to describe the phenomenon of decreased nerve function caused by spinal bones that are not in the proper position or lack normal movement. Each pair of spinal bones creates a tunnel on either side, the right and the left, where a spinal nerve exits to the body. These spinal nerves are a direct extension of the spinal cord and go out into the body to control a specific organ or tissue. When the two spinal bones that create the tunnel for the exiting spinal nerve are not in the right position or lack normal movement, pressure is being put on the spinal nerve, which inhibits that nerve from functioning normally. It is the job of the chiropractor to identify which level needs the spinal adjustment and by administering the adjustment will correct the subluxation.
When should the spinal adjustment be given?
The spinal adjustment, which should be administered by the only health care profession specifically trained to identify and correct subluxation is given when the spinal bones are not in the right position or lack normal motion therefore putting pressure on the nerves that come out between them. This can happen for a multitude of reasons including trauma of childbirth (for mother and infant), trauma of any kind including sudden impact like falls and car accidents or even repetitive microtraumas like bad posture. The spinal adjustment is not only administered when there are symptoms present. Usually a problem is present long before the onset of symptoms and it is for that reason that everyone should have their spine checked regularly for subluxation. Pain free is not problem free! The chiropractic adjustment should be delivered when the spinal bones are not in the right position or lack normal motion, which puts pressure on the nerves. The only way to tell if your spinal bones are not in proper alignment or motion is to visit a chiropractor and get your spine checked!