In this week's Citizen...
I work with many folks who are disabled. The stigma of disability
is very painful on the emotional front due to isolation and loss of
employment which complicates the ability to heal the physical
It is quite a blow to self esteem when someone's pain keeps them
from performing adequately at his or her job. Someone with multiple
absences and a much lower level of productivity faces the difficult
decision of leaving a job that was once fulfilling. For jobs that are
physically demanding, it becomes unsafe to remain employed.
Insurance companies often put limitations on treatment. Because
no one fits a textbook example, care is usually prematurely stopped
even though published studies have shown a less intensive care plan
leaves people in a state of chronic pain one year after a traumatic
injury. Fair or unfair, patients need to do the best they can to
remain consistent with strategies to assist their healing.
I have worked with people who have dealt with debilitating
headaches, fibromyalgia, depression, post-concussion syndrome,
herniated discs, severe fractures, arthritis and multiple sclerosis,
just to name a few.
The most common goal is to help people have more energy so they
can take part in family activities. For many of them, getting their
pain to a tolerable level so they are not always in bed is a
From a long term standpoint, disability accelerates aging. As much
as I hate the word aging, I need to use it in order to help folks get
the help they need. Disabling conditions have one thing in common,
the body's reserves were so low at the time of injury or illness that
healing became greatly impaired.
The chiropractic adjustment helps spinal joints release mechanical
tension that disrupts messaging to and from the brain. This can have
an effect on organ function and how well the immune system protects
the body from pathogens.
When the spine is not moving, health deteriorates. Getting people
to move as much as they can without causing a severe flare up is an
important aspect of maintaining health. This takes quite a bit of
trial and error to find the happy medium for each person's needs.
Chiropractic certainly helps with the ups and downs.
Probably the most compelling aspect of care is looking back at the
ways the body was already in a weakened state prior to the injury or
illness. There may have been a destructive pattern going on for
years. Recognizing this and reversing the behavior patterns can be
an important stress reducer.
Another benefit of chiropractic care is mood enhancement because
of the brain and body connection at the spine. The spinal cord
contains limbic system cells just like the brain does and a greater
feeling of well being can be achieved with spinal adjustments. Anger
and grief from past events can be managed more effectively.
Dealing with a disability or similar crisis can be a disheartening
experience. Adding a chiropractor to your support team can be of