I am going to preface this post with saying that chiropractic care does not CURE anything. Now that that’s clarified, I would like to amend that statement to say that chiropractic allows YOUR BODY to cure many things: ear infections, allergies, headaches, back pain, asthma, and the list goes on and on. It may seem like I’m splitting hairs here, but the wording of that statement is key to understanding what chiropractic is and how it helps. Chiropractic unleashes your body’s potential to function at its highest level. This optimal level is where we were all intended to function, and it is here that your body can heal from all the things I listed above and more. Please don’t misunderstand me. I will never say there is not a place and time for Western medicine to take over and cases where our bodies need assistance. There are instances where the body reaches it limitations and cannot adapt to the changes that have altered its function beyond self-repair. What I am, instead, suggesting is that chiropractic care should be utilized before the body decides it has had enough and needs those interventions. But you might still be wondering how chiropractic helps, so here we go.
You are probably already aware that chiropractors adjust the spine, but you may not know the reason why. It isn’t the bones we are necessarily concerned with, but the part of the spinal cord or nervous system that the particular bone is inhibiting. In case you haven’t studied anatomy, we’re going to start with a little lesson there to help explain this. Your brain is connected to every cell, tissue, and organ in your body by your nervous system which is comprised of your spinal cord and nerves. The spinal cord exits your skull as your brainstem and then runs through your spine until it branches off and becomes the nerves that reach all the way from your fingers to your toes. It is the nervous system that allows your heart to pump, your lungs to breathe, your toes to wiggle, your eyes to see all because of the communication created by the connection between your body and your brain. Think of this like your body’s interstate system. Messages are coming and going from your brain to your body and vice versa so it can function the way it needs to, to survive. Sometimes the bones of the spine can misalign and cause the messages to move a little slower or stop altogether causing a traffic jam. These traffic jams can be so small you may not even notice them because your body finds an alternate route so it can still function. Like any GPS, the body can only find so many alternate routes to send the messages before they all become jammed which is when the body starts ringing its fire alarms. These fire alarms are what we call symptoms: headaches, ear infections, back pain, allergies, heartburn. They can stop you from picking up kids, running a half-marathon, or getting a good night’s sleep. Chiropractors serve as the maintenance men (or women) who come repair the potholes or remove the landslides that are interrupting the traffic on your interstate system and causing the alarms. They find the specific segment of the spine that is affecting your body’s ability to adapt and function and correct it at just the right time so the traffic can flow freely again. Removing the traffic jams, even the smallest ones, can be key to allowing the body to heal itself and function properly.
Our bodies were not made to simply survive, but to thrive. The body was made to adapt and usually does an amazing job doing so. In return, it is our responsibility to respect the body and understand that we must care for it before it has to sound alarms to get our attention. Chiropractic care respects the body and what it needs, understanding that your body is the real genius, the real doctor. Chiropractors simply remove the interference so your nervous system traffic can run smoothly along the interstates. This is the reason chiropractic can help with so many ailments. Adjustments don’t only affect one bone but changes the function of the nervous system so it can operate the way it was intended. It is when the body is in this fully functioning state that the healing begins and is how chiropractic actually works.