Stages of Care
patient will encounter 3 stages of care. The first stage focuses on symptomatic
relief such as reduction of pain and other discomforts. The following stage
addresses tissue healing and function normalization. The final stage consists
of periodic spinal care to prevent the formation of new injuries, minimize
future flare-ups of old injuries, and prevent degenerative spinal processes
- Relief Care
- Corrective Care
- Wellness Care
Relief care is
the first stage of care for most patients. The primary goal during this initial
stage is to provide the individual with symptomatic relief. Treatments focus on
those techniques and therapies which most quickly and effectively reduce pain
and other discomforts. This will allow the majority of individuals to continue
their activities of daily living.
Patients are generally recommended to
"take it easy" but are encouraged to stay mobile and functional so
long as there is not a risk of further injury or tissue damage. Therapies that
reduce inflammation and muscle spasm are also used during this stage when
stage of care consists of correcting the problems which caused and contributed
to the condition and healing and rehabilitating the injured tissues. Unless
these events take place, a favorable outcome is unlikely and future recurrences
of the problem are likely. It is extremely important that the patient comply
with and follow the instructions given by the doctor during this stage of care.
Tissues and structures that are not fully healed and rehabilitated are prone to
future problems. Sticking to appointments, complying with home exercises and
instructions and following all other recommendations will help insure this
occurs. Patients should also be aware that once pain and discomfort have subsided, tissue
healing and functional correction is many times still incomplete and will often
require additional treatments.
spinal tissues are healed and spinal biomechanics have normalized the patient
will be recommended to continue with periodic spinal checkups. For some this
might mean once per year, for others this may mean once per month or more.
Chiropractic spinal checkups provide similar benefits to the spine that dental
checkups provide to the teeth. Namely, catching minor problems and disturbances
before they have the
opportunity to cause pain, discomfort and irreversible tissue changes. Just
like with cavities and heart attacks, irreversible tissue damage has generally
occurred before the symptoms of spinal pain and discomfort become apparent.
The Chiropractic “Adjustment” –
How is it performed?
The most common therapeutic procedure performed by doctors of
chiropractic is known as “spinal manipulation,” also called “chiropractic
adjustment.” It is a highly specific, controlled, manual procedure that focuses
on a specific joint, using a low force velocity (pressure) in a specific
direction. Basically, a force is applied to the joint of the body, particularly
the spine, “unlocking” it from its improper “ restricted position. This helps
reduce pain, and restore or enhance joint function.
There are different techniques and procedure that are adapted to
meet the specific needs of each patient.
We take into consideration a persons age, sex, weight, and bone/muscle
structure to determine the most effective adjustment technique to use.
Very few patients report that there is any pain associated with
having an adjustment. It is also common to hear or feel a “popping” sound,
which is normal when gases in the joints are released.
What’s that cracking or popping noise?
A joint contains fluids that help keep it healthy and lubricated (like oil for
the joints) this “synovial fluid”contains gas (like carbonation in soft drinks)
When an adjustment is made you may hear a noise (called an “audible release”). The
audible release or “crack” is simply caused by the change in pressure within
the joint that results in the release of gas bubbles in the joint -much like
when you open a can of soda. There is no pain or harm involved- it’s exactly
the same when you crack you knuckles.