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Saturday, November 01, 2014

Chiropractic Dirty Words: Part 2

Last month I shared with my audience one of the dirty words of chiropractic. I wrote about subluxation, a word chiropractors cannot agree upon. Now I will present a word folks on the outside of chiropractic do not understand.

The next dirty word is maintenance. Someone can receive maintenance care at the chiropractor's office by receiving a spinal adjustment when he or she is not in pain. The reason for this is because superior benefits are experienced when the body is not in a state of stress.

Maintenance is highly valued when talking about car care. Making sure the brakes are in top condition and the engine has fresh oil are very important for safety. When precious cargo is on board, no one wants to risk a serious accident or breakdown late at night during treacherous weather.

I don't know anybody who says he'll wait until he gets a flat tire to check the pressure. We've all had to deal with the surprise dead battery, but to ignore the technician's advice and hope a Good Samaritan will come by with jumper cables does not make sense.

When the roof starts to leak or a few shingles have worn off, a roofer is called in to fix it. I know some incredible procrastinators, but people who enjoy comfort will not wait until the roof collapses.

How about lawn maintenance? Have you ever seen a yard that has grown out of control so badly that there is a fear of an alligator or grizzly bear living among the brush? That could be your spine!

To some, chiropractic is only for accidents and injuries. Being proactive is not synonymous with chiropractic if you happen to be an administrator of a health maintenance organization. The irony could really anger me, but I get adjusted instead.

Too often I hear the statement: if you start going to a chiropractor you have to keep going back. That haunts me like hearing Henny Youngman say, “Take my wife, please,” over and over again. I suppose if you start brushing your teeth you will have to keep doing that, too.

Why do we have maintenance drugs? Maybe people with kidney transplants really don't need anti-rejection medicines. Yes, I am being sarcastic. Even weight loss programs teach their participants about the importance of the maintenance phase.

Chiropractic is like anything else you make a commitment to. You will get out of it exactly what you put into it. Since the spine absorbs your stress every second, the wear and tear is real.

It is very tragic when I see folks who had no idea they were at risk and then suffered a rather simple injury that forced them to apply for disability. Now, the maintenance care they know helps them get out of bed in the morning and barely manage a few activities.

You are not a roof or an automobile. The spine cannot be replaced like a tire or window. Chiropractic maintenance care works. It changes lives. The best advice I can give is: don't wait.

Dirty Words of Chiropractic: Part 1

I've been writing about health and healing for quite some time and it can seem as if I am repeating myself. The rules for health are fairly basic but there is still plenty to discuss when it comes to chiropractic. As a thank you to my regular readers I am now going to reveal some of the dirty words of chiropractic.

Just like the old days on the back of the school bus and in the bathroom stall with the broken door, we can be rebellious and talk about some surprising topics. How can there be dirty words in chiropractic? Well, all professions have their disagreements and they can get ugly.

The chiropractic dirty word I will blurt out is subluxation. Oh, the cringing has begun. While some of my peers will rant all night about this word's profoundness, the other half will say it is as useless and extinct as the woolly mammoth.

I give tons of credit to my own practice members. They know all about subluxations. They come in to the office and tell me with no doubts that they are subluxated. They get adjusted. We work together to reduce their subluxations.

I don't know why it is a dirty word when when orthopedics, dentistry, and ophthalmology also use the word subluxation to define a dislocation or displacement of some type of anatomy. In chiropractic it is a spinal joint that has lost full range of motion which also demonstrates a number of dysfunctional processes that are taking place to cause discomfort and energy depletion.

A subluxation shows there is a stress in play that interferes with homeostasis. If it goes on too long, permanent damage can be observed. We don't want it to get to the permanent point.

The problem according to chiropractic complainers is that subluxations are a bit subtle. It is not as blaring as a heart attack or fractured femur. A chiropractor doesn't get the heroic response for adjusting spines the same way as someone holding an artery together during transplant surgery.

Chiropractic researchers want to perfectly measure a subluxation so they can say, there it is, oh my gosh! We can, however, look at health indicators before and after a spinal adjustment. There are clear changes shown with blood pressure, brain wave patterns, endocrine responses, immune responses, muscle activity and skin temperature.

Let's not overlook the unique form of palpation where the chiropractor relies on the hands to assess thousands of spinal presentations over many years of practice, storing them in his or her brain in order to give a personalized adjustment to each patient.

Subluxations are not complicated to my practice members. They know when they have let stress get the better of them. They also learn over time their own subluxation patterns. They have trained themselves to be more aware of their bodies' needs.

If you're not the type to shout out dirty words in public, you can whisper. But make sure to learn how subluxations affect quality of life so you can do something about it.