Chiropractic is a complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM) health profession concerned with the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of mechanical disorders of the musculoskeletal system, and the effects of these disorders on the function of the nervous system and general health.
There is an emphasis on manual treatments including spinal manipulations termed “adjustments”.
Chiropractors use an extensive examination process which includes; stress test, muscle testing, postural analysis, range of motion studies, orthopedic tests, and radiographic imaging to diagnose a patient’s condition and arrive at a course of treatment. In addition, they provide a careful chiropractic structural examination, paying particular attention to the spine.
Accidents, falls, stress, tension, overexertion, and countless other factors can result in displacements or subluxation of the spinal column, causing, irritation to spinal nerve roots. These irritations are often what cause malfunctions in the human body.
Chiropractic teaches that reducing or eliminating this irritation to spinal nerves can cause your body to operate more efficiently and more comfortably.
Chiropractic also places an emphasis on nutritional and exercise programs, wellness and lifestyle modifications for promoting physical and mental health.
While chiropractors make no use of drugs or surgery, Doctors of chiropractic do refer patients for medical care when those interventions are indicated. In fact, chiropractors, medical doctors, physical therapist and other health care professionals now works as partners in occupational health, sports medicine, and a wide variety of other rehabilitation practices.
Chiropractic is used by professional athletes, and, for example, the US Olympic Medical Services Staff includes doctors of chiropractic who work with medical doctors for the benefit of the athletes.
According to a 2002 survey released in 2004 by the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine, chiropractic was the fourth most commonly used complementary and alternative medicine therapy among adults in the United Stated (7.5%). It is now practice in hundreds of different ways.
The US Department of Labor’s Occupational Outlook Handbook said:
Because chiropractors emphasize the importance of healthy lifestyles and do not prescribe drugs or perform surgery, chiropractic care is appealing to many health-conscious Americans. Chiropractic treatment of the back, neck, extremities, and joints has become more accepted as a result of research and changing attitudes about alternative, noninvasive health care practices.