Many people think of going to a chiropractor when they have pain like headaches, neckaches or backaches. The chiropractor uses spinal manipulation or adjustments to restore the proper alignment, relieve pain and promote healing. Many forms of exercise, like yoga and Pilates, are supposed to help keep the spine supple and in proper alignment. So why can’t you just do that instead of making a trip to the chiropractor?
What Is Chiropractic?
Chiropractic treatment has been around since 1895 and focuses on how spinal health affects overall health. It is thought that when the spine is in the correct alignment, the nervous system, circulatory system and even the digestive system all work optimally. Adjustments may be done with the hand, manipulation tools or an adjustment table.
Chiropractors must complete four or five years of chiropractic college after four years of undergraduate study. However, since they do not attend medical school, they cannot issue prescriptions and are not allowed hospital privileges. In addition, an aspiring chiropractor must pass a national exam administered by the National Board of Chiropractic Examiners before practicing. After successful completion of the national exam, they must also pass state exams and complete continuing education each year.
Why Can’t Exercise Suffice?
Your spine is comprised of 24 vertebrae. When you do yoga, Pilates or strength work, you are moving the muscles around your spine. When you stretch, you may even feel your back or neck pop as the pressure changes on the vertebrae. This is a result of moving the whole spine. There is no way to move them back into place voluntarily.
A chiropractor has spent years studying the musculoskeletal system. They understand the symptoms and risks associated with the misalignment, and they have learned the appropriate techniques to realign the spine. A chiropractor moves the vertebra back into its paraphysiological space, which is outside of the normal range of motion. No exercise can duplicate this result.
Chiropractic care is a wellness-based practice. Exercise is undoubtedly complementary to a healthy lifestyle. It can increase strength and flexibility, which protects the spine. But, when pain or limited range of motion exists that doesn’t get better with time or stretching, a chiropractic exam may help shed light on the problem. Your chiropractor, like a chiropractor from AmeriWell Clinics, may not only be able to correct the source of the problem with an adjustment, but they can suggest activities to help maintain healing and proper spinal alignment.