Chiropractic adjustments involve flexing a spinal joint in order to improve range of motion and relieve pain, stiffness, weakness, and other symptoms that can accompany a spine condition. Adjustments are a common chiropractic procedure and the tool chiropractors most often rely on to treat patients. If you are interested in this form of treatment, the following information can help you work more closely with your doctor to make an informed decision about your care.
Why chiropractors perform adjustments
A chiropractor performs adjustments as an alternative treatment for those suffering from neck and back pain. Some research has shown that this type of manual manipulation can be an effective way to relieve mild to moderate pain on a temporary basis. Chiropractic adjustments stretch the joints, muscles, and ligaments in the affected area of your spine, and this stretching can potentially increase range of motion, promote blood flow, and may help relieve pain, stiffness, weakness, tingling, and other symptoms.
What you can expect
Adjustments are typically performed throughout an initial appointment and a number of follow-up visits in the months afterward. Before performing any adjustments, a chiropractor might use a technique called manual detection to locate the area of your spine that is causing you problems. Diagnostic imagery such as an X-ray may also be taken. Then, when performing adjustments, he or she will quickly and gently stretch that spinal joint, often pushing it past its normal range of motion.
Chiropractors might also recommend manipulation under anesthesia, which allows stretching and mobilization of your spinal joints without the worry of tensing or wincing by the patient that might otherwise inhibit the process. You might feel and hear some cracks and pops as your chiropractor performs the adjustments, as pockets of air often found in the tissue fluid surrounding the joint burst. After the adjustments are complete, you may feel some soreness and tightness in the surrounding muscles, but there is typically an increase in range of motion and a temporary decrease in pain.
When to consider spine surgery
While often effective, if conservative treatments like chiropractic adjustments, medications, physical therapy, exercise, massage, and others have failed to reduce neck and back pain, surgery can become an option. If so, contact Laser Spine Institute today.
Whether your pain is the result of bone spurs, foraminal stenosis, a pinched nerve, or any of a number of degenerative spine conditions, we perform minimally invasive spine surgery that is a safer and effective alternative to traditional open neck or back procedures.^
Find out if you may be a candidate for one of our procedures by asking for your free MRI review* from a member of our dedicated team.