What is chiropractic?

Chiropractic is a holistic, drug-free, non-surgical method of treating conditions that are due to mechanical dysfunction of the joints and their effects on the nervous system by manipulation.

Spinal manipulation can be traced back many centuries — prehistoric cave paintings in France dating back to 17,500 BC were the first known depictions of spinal manipulation and Hippocrates himself recommended that healers 'get knowledge of the spine, for this is the requisite for many diseases'.

Modern chiropractic is based on the 'one cause, one cure' theory outlined by Daniel David Palmer in 1895, who reportedly performed a spinal adjustment on a deaf janitor with a misaligned vertebrae and restored his hearing as well as his ability to stand up straight without pain.

What can chiropractic treat?

What happens during a chiropractic session?

Your chiropractor will take your history, including family history, diet and work and lifestyle-related factors and carry out a physical examination, focusing on muscle strength and postural and structural problems.

Most chiropractors use x-rays to locate subluxations (partial dislocation of a joint) and to rule out any conditions that would preclude treatment — for example, fractures, osteoporosis, bone or joint infections, bone cancer, acute rheumatoid arthritis and diseases of the spinal cord or bone marrow.

You will be asked to lie on a specially constructed table that conforms to body contours. Your chiropractor will use their hands to adjust the joints of your spine and extremities where signs of restriction in movement are found, thus improving mobility and relieving pain.

Your body's own healing processes will then be able to get on with the task of improving your health. This treatment is known as 'adjustment' or 'manipulation'.

How many treatments will be necessary?

This will vary from person to person depending on the problem, the length of time you have had a particular complaint and your own commitment to any rehabilitative exercises and maintenance visits that your chiropractor may recommend.

An average course of treatment may entail five or six visits over two or three weeks.

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