Spinal Care 101
A spinal adjustment is designed to place movement into the joint and correct the head, spine, and pelvis back to a balanced unstressed position. When this repositioning happens it reactivates the signal for healing from our brains to the affected part of our body via the nervous system (remember when we were talking about how important that health was? This is why!) so that our natural health process can begin again.
Why Is Balancing Our Bodies So important?
As long as the weight of the head is centered over the neck the spinal column with remain straight. Once this weight has shifted off-center from trauma or accident, the body will try and compensate for the force and move into a non-centered unbalanced position which puts added strain on muscles and ligaments in the surrounding area.
This imbalance is so significant it can show up with one of the legs being longer or shorter due to one side of your hip being higher or lower than the other. That will result in an unbalanced framework resulting in:
- Muscular Imbalance
- Abnormal Movement
- Decreased Range Of Motion (ROM) In Joints
- Deterioration over time with progressing wear and tear
How Do We Receive These Injuries To Our Spine?
As we go throughout our daily lives our bodies receive micro injuries over and over. As this builds up it can affect our health and wellbeing drastically. By seeking regular chiropractic care we can help prevent the degeneration of our nervous system which in turn helps prevent the degeneration of our overall body. This is very important and one of the key reasons that we like to spread the importance of keeping your spine and nervous system healthy!
How Can I Restore My Body Balance?
We offer different spinal treatments to help restore your spinal health and get movement back into the area. With a gentle touch and non-surgical procedures, most of our patients experience a huge amount of pain relief in just a couple of visits.
We like to sit down with our patients and get to the root cause of their symptoms right away so we can get started on an effective treatment plan immediately. The main goal for us is to restore the entire spine back to its original balanced positions. There should be no strain on the muscles in the surrounding area. The doctor will first calculate the precise position the entire spine has tilted, shifted or rotated from its center.
Even if there is a slight displacement of the spine from its normal positions it can cause injury and imbalance. This can cause brain stem compression rusting in increased problems that can be noticed throughout the body. This is again where we talk about the importance of spinal health and keeping your nervous system healthy! It affects every part of your body so it is very essential to one’s well being.
By combining a formula calculated from x-rays and biomechanics, the doctor is able to make the correction. He will apply a slight predetermined pressure just below the ear near the atlas vertebrae to gentle reposition the head over the neck. This is where brain stem compression can happen and how it is improved. This procedure involves little to no twisting and can sometimes have minor popping or cracking sounds and can be felt by the patient.
By precisely correcting the spine with this method, the nervous system in a whole begins to function properly and optimally. When the spine is this balanced and unstressed it allows the body to be more stable and is a process of recovery and healing for the rest of your body. This long -term stability correction is what reverses the progressive degenerative disease that affects the body imbalance and brain stem compression.
What Can You Expect After Spinal Treatment?
Once a correction has been made the entire nervous system will begin to function better. Immediately muscles begin to relax and ease up resulting in increased blood and oxygen levels. Healing messages are transmitted through the brain to the affected area and the body’s self-healing process begins. The process of recovery has now begun from the long term effect of being unbalanced following the new corrections. Your body may express itself in different ways. Some common examples would be:
- Alleviation of pain and symptoms
- Tired and/or relaxed feeling
- Lightheadedness and/or headache
- Sinus drainage or popping in the ears
- Joint popping as muscles relax
- Throbbing or tingling sensations
- Muscle soreness over the first few days as the body has moved into a different position
- Pain in the area of an old injury
- Skin temperature changes, sometimes perspiration changes
- Body elimination-diarrhea or constipation
- Painful areas will shift to other areas of the body
- Many times discomfort in limbs will begin to move toward the hands and feet and eventually leave the body.
When Will I Experience Relief?
Depending on the severity of the spinal column condition the duration of recovery time will vary per individual. Some patients will see relief immediately while others will take more time. One of the key misconceptions is that being out of pain means that your body has healed. Usually, it takes a month to recover or heal for every year the spine has been in an unbalanced position.
Why are X-rays necessary before and after the correction?
A correction cannot happen until precise X-rays have been taken and analyzed before the correction. The x-rays taken prior to correction (pre x-rays) allow the doctor to determine the exact magnitude and directions the entire spine has shifted from the centered, balanced position. This calculation is like the patient’s fingerprint, individual to them and generally no two formulas are the same.
X-rays will then be taken to ensure that the correction has held and was made. When the X-rays show that an adequate correction has been made the doctor will now be able to use the same formula on any necessary corrections with that patient in the future. If an unacceptable correction was made the doctor will recalculate the x-rays and make another correction and then take an additional set of x-rays to ensure the positive corrections was made and has held.
Different Stages Of Healing
- Acute Stage – The doctors first and primary objective will be to restore the entire spine to a balanced position. This will then reactivate your body’s natural self-healing process in order to relieve your pain and symptoms quickly and effectively.
- Stabilization & Healing Stage – When the patient is in this stage of recovery the correction that occurred is becoming stronger and more stable than before. Most of our patients will start to notice more relief while requiring less adjusting during this stage of healing. Your body balance will be monitored occasionally under the doctor’s recommendations to ensure that the correction is maintained and healing continues to thrive.
- Health Maintenance Stage – During this time, the body will continue to recover from the long-term effects the correction had on the entire body, providing the correction is maintained. Regular chiropractic care is always advised, especially with chronic pain conditions. Remember when we spoke about the 1 month per Year of Injury rule? This means that you need continued care to continue to get better and stay better!
It is generally at this stage where patients being to learn how to take their health into their own hands. If the patient maintains their correction by visiting the doctor periodically, they have the ability to live a pain-free life, strengthen their body’s natural system and increase their overall health and quality in which they live.
How Often Do I Need A Spinal Correction?
During the initial treatment period a number of different corrections may be necessary to establish a centered spinal column. Once the spine is in a stable holding position many patients maintain their corrections for weeks, months or even years at a time. Ideally, you seek regular chiropractic care for its benefits! Recovery will continue as long as that optimal healing environment is maintained! Patients who allow adequate time for the correction and stabilization of body balance will see the best long term results.
What Will My First Appointment Look Like?
During your first appointment, Dr. Pintos will gather information about your health and complete a preliminary exam to determine if you have an imbalance (misalignment) is present. If one is found and there’s an indication he can help you with your particular condition, we will then take a set of preliminary x-rays to determine the exact degree and magnitude of the misalignment. This will be the conclusion of your first appointment.
Your Second Visit!
During the second appointment, Dr. Pintos will discuss your report of findings, make the spinal correction if able to do so at that time and take post x-rays to determine if an adequate correction has been made. Once this process is complete, follow-up visits will be scheduled.
Long Term Treatments!
During follow-up visits, Dr. Pintos will evaluate your condition and compare it with a healing timeline to only make spinal corrections when necessary. This will allow your body to fully recover from the long-term progressive degenerative effects of a previously misaligned spine.
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