Thumbs Up to Relief
Many people go to a chiropractor because they are in pain. In this first phase of care, the main goal is to reduce your symptoms. Most people are under the assumption that if they don't feel any pain that there is nothing wrong with them - that they are healthy. Unfortunately, pain is a very poor indicator of health. In fact, pain and other symptoms frequently only appear after a disease or other condition has become advanced.
When a patient experiences a musculoskeletal disorder, the body reacts in a way to protect the area of dysfunction and decrease any further damage. This neuromuscular reaction can include the increased perception of pain as well as swelling and muscle spasms. To be able to correct the area of dysfunction, the doctor must first treat to reduce the natural defensive (compensation) responses. This is accomplished by the use of adjunctive therapies to help reduce swelling, spasm, and pain along with the use of joint mobilizations, traction and stretching to unlock the joints and increase their range of motion. Based on the severity of the condition, a visit frequency ranging from daily to 3 times per week will be necessary. It is within this time period an acute or recently acquired injury will begin healing.
For example, consider a cavity in your tooth. Does it hurt when it first develops or only after it has become serious? How about heart disease? Regardless of whether you are talking about cancer, heart disease, diabetes, stress or problems with the spine, pain is usually the last thing to appear. When you begin chiropractic care, pain is also the first symptom to disappear, even though much of the underlying condition remains.