What are chiropractors really good for?

This might sound like a trick question...

but I assure you that I am talking about the actual purpose of chiropractic medicine. If you have already become one of my patients, then you know what we're good for because I spell it out in my new patient orientation during the physical exam. It is also pretty explicit on my website, but I will make sure that I come out and say it now. 

The Chiropractic Adjustment is a therapeutic modality designed to remove subluxation from the spine and eliminate the vertebral subluxation complex by applying a specific corrective force to a misaligned and malfunctioning vertebra. 

One example of what a chiropractic adjustment could look like. This move happens to be called a "Cross-pisiform" adjustment. 

One example of what a chiropractic adjustment could look like. This move happens to be called a "Cross-pisiform" adjustment. 

Okay, that's a lot of fancy doctor talk. So let's break it down. Chiropractors aren't pain doctors, or crack doctors, or even witch doctors. We're neuromusculoskeletal specialists which means we take care of the nervous system by way of the muscular and skeletal systems. We re-align bones that are out of alignment by adjusting our patients. By doing so, we relieve the interference in the nervous system caused by the misalignment. That's it. We move the bones that are out of place to get pressure off the nerves. 

It is by correcting these subluxations, (which you can read all about here or through the rest of my blog series that came out on Mondays over the last few weeks), that we as chiropractors can begin to see symptoms fade away. We see pain disappear. We see chronic diseases get better. We see childhood asthma vanish. Are we doing this? NO! It's the patient's own body that is doing the healing and restoring their health. All we have done is remove the interference in the nervous system that is preventing the body from functioning at optimum capacity. 

It is for this reason, I believe, that chiropractic is not more widely recognized for its healing art. The problem that we address is so seemingly small, and yet for so many patients, the benefits that they receive are so big. However, most of the "results" that these patients see in reduction of their symptoms are secondary and can't be directly linked to the chiropractic adjustment. And you know what? I'm okay with that. I'm okay with knowing that my patients are getting better, and that my patients' lives are changing for the better. I also believe that as the science and research into chiropractic continues to advance that we will one day soon be able to explain and scientifically prove all of the anecdotal evidence that we have had for years. 

Yours in health, 

Dr. William