Frequently Asked Questions


Why Chiropractic Care?

This is a good question, and one that many people world-wide are asking. Currently there is a trend towards the understanding that dealing with the cause of a condition or illness is more logical than just attempting to attack the symptoms. Symptoms are just that – the obvious result of an underlying condition, the cause of which needs attention. Because Chiropractors understand the relationship between the nervous system and the functioning human body they are in a unique position to evaluate what it is your body needs.

Where chiropractic care is coming to the forefront is by addressing the condition/cause, not only the symptoms. Through treating the subluxations which are the cause of the problems a person is experiencing, Chiropractors can reduce and/or eliminate the symptoms preventing you from reaching your fullest health potential.

Chiropractic care is based on the premise that the body is governed by its nervous system. In cases where this has been upset from its normal, healthy function by a subluxation Chiropractic can help restore normal, ‘natural’ function to the joints and reduce nerve message distortion. The result of this successful adjustment is a body in harmony with itself and with its surroundings. Bodily harmony in relation to the spinal vertebrae and other bones can result in 'reduced pain'. In turn, reduced pain leads to physical and mental harmony; each one feeds (or serves) the other.

Rather than resorting to drugs or even surgery, millions are discovering that chiropractic care can offer help for a wide variety of problems, and often in a relatively short period of time.

Just some examples of where chiropractic research is heading include its affect on:

  • Asthma
  • Back and Neck Pain
  • Sporting injuries
  • Colic
  • Headache
  • Sinusitis
  • Inability to sleep
  • Difficulties with pregnancy
  • Ear infections
  • Overall Quality of Life

As can be seen from this list of a few of the conditions found to be assisted through chiropractic attention, it isn't only the most obvious 'bone-related' disorders that can receive lasting benefits from chiropractic care.

Chiropractors work on the principle of reducing interference so the nervous system and body can work better. Providing that any symptom or condition is occurring as a result of nerve interference from vertebral subluxation, there is a very good chance that it will improve with chiropractic care.


What is a subluxation?

A subluxation in chiropractic terms is merely another word for a slight dislocation, misalignment or joint dysfunction of one or more of the spinal joints. They tend to irritate or aggravate the nerve roots coming from the spinal cord itself. The results of a subluxation may be pain, muscle changes or organ dysfunction – depending on which nerves are being affected.


What Is An Adjustment?

The simplest description for a chiropractic adjustment is that it is a specific movement of the spine or other area of the body to correct the lost or aberrant movement of a vertebrae or joint. Of course there are many ways for a chiropractor to effect an adjustment and just as many ways to describe the procedure.

The location of the subluxation on the body determines the style and form of the adjustment. Generally speaking, though, a chiropractic adjustment involves a specific and controlled pressure or force being applied in a specific direction to a fixed or locked joint in order to 'unseize' it. The purpose of this adjustment is to improve the spinal function, nervous system function, remove muscle tension, and boost general health.

After years of training and clinical experience, your  chiropractors are highly skilled in delivering a variety of trusted adjustment techniques for your health and wellness.


What’s that popping sound we hear during some chiropractic adjustments?

Knowing what to expect when you visit your chiropractor, helps to relieve any apprehension or even fear you may have beforehand. Being prepared for a small popping sound as your joint or back is adjusted will help you to relax.

So what causes the popping sound you may hear as you're being adjusted?

It's all a matter of gases – more accurately the sudden release of gases around the joint being adjusted - as simple as that. As to what causes the gases to make this sound is also simple: each joint, especially in the spinal joints, is lubricated by a fluid not unlike egg white. This fluid ensures smoothness of movement and cushioning of the joint from shock and stresses. It essentially permits a silky action for the joint, reducing friction on the bone through all its planes of movement.

As with most fluids there are air bubbles (carbon dioxide and nitrogen) contained within this flowing substance. As your chiropractor carries out the adjustment the joint opens and releases the gases with a 'pop'.

The fluid then returns to its proper location around the joint and continues to carry out its function of lubrication and carrying waste products away from the area.


Is chiropractic care safe?

Chiropractors perform their adjustments or re-alignments on millions of people around the world every working day with the resulting relief and easing of pain provided for countless sufferers. The very rare risk of infrequent strain/injury to a ligament or disc in the neck (less than 1 in 139,000) or the lower back (1 in 62,000) is very low. The comparison of chiropractic care to a course of anti-inflammatory drugs to alleviate the pain of a mis-alignment has demonstrated conclusively that chiropractic is 250 times safer (1).

You may feel a little sore for a day or two after your chiropractic adjustment. This is mainly due to the body's process of re-adjusting itself after its period of being subluxated. As to there being any particular concerns over visits to the chiropractor and the care you receive at their hands, it has been shown that there is no more risk having gone to see your friendly chiropractor for an adjustment than visiting your local GP for a medical consultation.

By comparison with other medical disciplines, where chiropractic care is concerned cases of serious injury are practically nonexistent.

Global risk-aware insurance companies recognise the safety of today's chiropractic care; the premiums for malpractice insurance paid by chiropractors are a mere fraction of what medical practitioners must pay - chiropractic care is safe.

References

1 Maigne R. Orthopedic Medicine: A New Approach to Vertebral Manipulations. Springfield, Illinois, Charles C. Thomas. 1972; 155, 169.
Cyriax J. Textbook of Orthopaedic Medicine. Vol 1. Diagnosis of soft tissue lesions (7th edition). London, Bailliere Tindall. 1978; 165.
Hosek RS, Schram SB, Silverman H, Meyers JB. Cervical Manipulation. J Amer Med Assoc. 1981; 245:922.
Gutmann G. Verletzungen der arteria vertebrailis durch manuelle therapie. Manuelle Medizin 1983; 21:2-14.
Dvorak J, Orelli F. How dangerous is manipulation of the cervical spine? Manuel Med 1985; 2:1-4.


Are all patients adjusted the same way?

Regardless of the adjusting technique, chiropractic care is tailored to each individual's age and condition. An example of this is with children. Children generally have more mobile joints, and therefore, require less force in order to attain the desired effect of the adjustment.

In addition to varying the amount of force used, adjustment frequency will also be customised to the individual. Different conditions require different schedules of care. Our practitioners will tailor a specific care plan for you that takes into account a number of factors. These factors include (but are not limited to), the results of x-rays, physical examination findings, what tissue is involved (eg. ligament, tendon, muscle, disc, organ), how long you have had the condition, the amount of inflammation and intensity of pain being experienced, and the presence of any aggravating factors to your condition (eg. your occupation or degeneration).

There are several factors which could influence the 'healing time' once you've had your adjustment. These include, but aren't restricted to: your age, the severity and length of time you've had the condition; nutrition – what you eat can make a difference to your recovery; occupation, posture and stress. All things considered it is probably wise to speak with your chiropractor.


Can the elderly benefit from chiropractic care?

These days what is elderly? What used to be considered 'old' at 60 is now only 'senior' at 80. How many people can you think of who look as though they're in their fifties, and then you discover they are well over 65 or even 70?

To find that you're adding on the years can be a little daunting for some – but it doesn't mean that you have to put up with the discomfort of aching backs, shoulders or limbs. What tends to happen though is that aching limbs and joints are often disregarded due to the "I'm just getting old" syndrome. Well, just because you may be getting older, is no reason to put up with pain or even discomfort.

Seniors often ask whether they can benefit through chiropractic care and if it will help to alleviate problems with shoulder, hip and other joints without jeopardising them. The answer is a definite 'yes'. The first step is to ask your chiropractor “Can you help me with my health problem?” If you don't ask the question, you will never know the answer. We will then be able to examine the facts of your individual circumstances, assess the pain and its causes and then tell you what can be done for you. The result will invariably be greater mobility and your body's ability to function better.

Many modern seniors are tending to shy away from over-medication for pain-relief, realising that through chiropractic care they are becoming pain-free and mobile to do the things they want to do, but without the fear of side-effects.

The concern that some have is in connection with chiropractic care and osteoporosis or other ailments – this doesn't have to be a concern because, with the necessary modifications applied to the individual's condition, chiropractic care is being used on a regular basis to alleviate such conditions with minimal after, or side effects. Indeed, many senior recipients of chiropractic care are consistently reporting freedom from pain and a markedly improved mobility, coupled with a noticeable reduction in arthritic symptoms.


Is chiropractic safe during pregnancy?

Another frequently asked question in our practice is "How safe are chiropractic procedures during pregnancy"?

Many women experience back pain during pregnancy due to the extra and unusual weight placed on the spine. Studies have shown that by providing a consistent programme of chiropractic care for the mum-to-be the nervous system and spine show health benefits before, during and after the birth. Please see our page dedicated to Pregnancy Care. Post natal chiropractic has also been found to have beneficial effects for a return to normal spine and pelvic posture.

In short, chiropractic care is safe and beneficial through all stages of pregnancy and thereafter. Our practice particularly caters for mum's to be and newborns so don't be shy. We even have a change table set up available. Dr Stefan constantly attend seminars and conferences on Perinatal Care as this is an area of special focus for us.


Should I visit my chiropractor if I’m not in pain?

Pain is a good indicator that something within the body requires attention but cannot tell us how severe the condition causing the pain may be. Sometimes we can become 'acclimatised' to the body's state and what ordinarily would be considered 'pain' is what we regard as a normal part of our daily life. The symptom becomes a mild discomfort that's to be endured because we have had it for a while and it has become just something that you accept.

Lack of pain is not necessarily a good signpost to the condition your spine is in. To use an example most of us are familiar with – a water leak may not always show us immediately where it starts. Often water will enter at point 'A' but not be seen until it reaches point 'F'. We say that it 'tracks' from its point of entry and winds and finds it way to an exit point. Pain has a similar habit of originating at a certain point, say, on the spine where either bad posture over a period of time or an injury we didn't even notice sets up an irritation of the nerves. The pain then tracks up or down to a point at which we now feel it. It could be severe or, in many cases, hardly felt at all except for the occasional 'twinge'.

The only way to establish if you have a mis-alighment in your spine is to see an experienced chiropractor. It is a good idea to get regular maintenance checks from your chiropractor, in the same way as you would do for your car; if it's good enough for a collection of metal, plastic and glass it is surely good enough for a bundle of bones, especially when it's the only bundle you possess.

If you wish for your body to function at its highest capacity this is something we can assist you with. Some people wait for teeth to start aching before they visit the dentist, by which time it is invariably too late to save the tooth. Not only that but a tooth filled with decay slowly affects the whole body eventually, and that means its physical and mental performance. Only by having a spine that is functioning optimally with minimal nerve interference, can we enjoy a full and active life.


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