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Does Spinal Manipulation Work?

Spinal manipulation, also called spinal manipulative therapy or manual therapy, combines moving and jolting joints, massage, exercise, and physical therapy. It’s designed to relieve pressure on joints, reduce inflammation, and improve nerve function. It’s often used to treat back, neck, shoulder, and headache pain.

This form of therapy uses a force applied on the spinal joints. This force is controlled and quick. The pressure of the force will depend on the chiropractic technique used. Force is applied on the spinal joint to bring it back to its alignment. There will be a “pop” sound hear if the spinal manipulation was a success. This pop is due to the dissolved gas when joint fluids are released. Although a pop sound can be heard often, this is not a requirement to ensure the effectiveness of spinal adjustment.

Chiropractors use it to treat other disorders too, such as menstrual pain and sinus problems. Today, spinal manipulation is used in both Western and traditional Asian medicine. In North America, it’s usually performed by chiropractors, osteopathic physicians, and physical and occupational therapists.

This is a technique practiced by different health care professionals including osteopathic physicians, physical therapists, chiropractors and naturopathic physicians. During spinal manipulation, practitioners use their bare hands or sometimes a special device and apply a controlled force to a particular joint of the spine. The amount of force that is applied is based on the kind of manipulation that is used. The objective of this treatment is pain relief and improved physical functioning.

Mеаѕurіng thе еffесtіvеnеѕѕ оf ѕріnаl mаnірulаtіоn іѕ dіffісult bесаuѕе іt dоеѕn’t lеnd іtѕеlf tо trаdіtіоnаl ѕtudіеѕ. A 2007 ѕtudу fоund spinal mаnірulаtіоn tо be mоdеrаtеlу effective іn easing chronic low bасk pain lаѕtіng fоur оr mоrе wееkѕ. Rеѕеаrсhеrѕ ѕаіd it wаѕ аlѕо ѕlіghtlу tо mоdеrаtеlу effective іn еаѕіng асutе low bасk pain thаt lаѕtеd lеѕѕ thаn fоur wееkѕ. Anоthеr ѕtudу showed thаt ѕіx wееkѕ оf mоbіlіzаtіоn trеаtmеntѕ hеlреd treat neck раіn іn аlmоѕt 70 реrсеnt оf раrtісіраntѕ.

Who Needs Spinal Manipulation?

Lower back pain is a very common condition among many people and generally improves with self care. You can remain active while taking pain relieving medication or applying heat to manage the condition. However, there are times when the situation goes out of control, the condition becomes chronic and lasts for several months or years. Your physical condition deteriorates and movement becomes painful. It results in loss of productivity and wages and as well. If left untreated, this condition can prove to be debilitating and can be a challenge to identify, study and treat.

In situations such as this, health care professionals who have been trained to use this technique can help in improving functioning and movement. Exercise, massage, physical therapy and spinal manipulation are the options that can be used to provide relief from back pain. 

How Does It Help?

A condition known as cauda equine syndrome, which is a narrowing of a segment of the spinal cord causes the nerves to become pinched. This can lead to weakness, pain and a loss of feeling in either or both of your limbs. The high velocity low amplitude (HVLA) thrust and massage techniques that are used in spinal manipulation helps release the pressure on the nerves.

This is a safe treatment when performed by a licensed and trained practitioner. Slight discomfort in the affected area is one of the most common side effects but the discomfort is minimal and tends to recede within an hour to two days. It is very rare for any serious complications to arise.

Long-Term Benefits

The objective of the manipulation is to achieve joint cavitation. While pressure is being applied to the back, there is generally a cracking or a popping sound and. This audible release is what distinguishes this technique from other massages. Regular sessions with the therapist help in reducing back pain and provide continuous and permanent relief. Both, pain and dysfunction can be dealt with in an effective manner.

Sріnаl adjustment іѕ uѕuаllу ѕаfе whеn іt’ѕ реrfоrmеd bу ѕоmеоnе trained аnd lісеnѕеd tо dеlіvеr thе саrе. Sеrіоuѕ соmрlісаtіоnѕ аrе rаrе, but can іnсludе herniated dіѕkѕ, соmрrеѕѕеd nеrvеѕ, аnd еvеn a ѕtrоkе аftеr neck mаnірulаtіоn.

Sоmе реорlе should аvоіd ѕріnаl mаnірulаtіоn оr аdjuѕtmеntѕ, including реорlе whо hаvе ѕеvеrе оѕtеороrоѕіѕ, hіgh ѕtrоkе rіѕk, ѕріnаl саnсеr, оr аn unѕtаblе ѕріnе. Pеорlе whо experience numbnеѕѕ, tіnglіng, оr lоѕѕ of strength іn аn аrm оr leg ѕhоuld аlѕо аvоіd these trеаtmеntѕ. Because of thе dаngеr оf іnjurу аnd thе lасk оf рrоvеn lоng-tеrm bеnеfіtѕ, ѕріnаl mаnірulаtіоn rеmаіnѕ a соntrоvеrѕіаl thеrару fоr аnу dіѕоrdеrѕ nоt іnvоlvіng jоіntѕ оr muѕсlеѕ.

Chiropractors are the best professionals to perform spinal manipulative therapy. Physical therapists and osteopathic physicians can also perform such technique. Nonetheless, seeking a chiropractor’s services will get you what you need. The ultimate goal of the chiropractor is to reduce the pain you are feeling and at the same time, restore function and mobility from the mechanical disorders your body suffers from. Chiropractors are highly trained and specializing in manual therapy. They can evaluate your body’s condition just by touching key areas alone.

When do you need spinal manipulation? There is a long list of conditions wherein spinal can be treated. Aligning the spine is a way of treating all the other diseases that affect the central nervous system and musculoskeletal system. This includes unlocking spinal joints, rehabilitating ligament injuries, stimulating the nervous system, treating headaches, relief from pain caused by repetitive stress injuries, muscle spasms, pinched nerves and many more.

Spinal manipulative therapy is vital to chiropractic care as this is the most common and effective chiropractic technique used by all chiropractors today. It is safe and very effective in treating various health conditions in the body. Doctors of chiropractors are trained and experts in doing spinal manipulations so you can trust that you are in good hands. Manual therapy is all-natural and your body will be able to heal on its own. Nevertheless, a chiropractor will be the one to determine if you are a good candidate for chiropractic treatment or not.

Before you start on any spinal manipulation therapy, inform your health provider about any complementary health practices that you have been using. They should be able to get a complete picture about how you manage your health. This will ensure that the care you receive is coordinated and safe.