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Neuro Mechanism

Chiropractic Care Does Do More Than Just Correct Your Spine

nervous system connectionsWe’ve talked before about how a Chiropractic adjustment has secondary benefits beyond the relief of back pain and the restoration your spine’s proper alignment and range of motion. A recent study cites a growing body of evidence that does indeed validate this.

Most of us are likely familiar with the positive endorphin release that occurs during massage therapy, exercise, and even Chiropractic adjustments.

This proprioceptive stimulation, or stimulation from the position and movement of the body, triggers the release of endorphins. These are neurotransmitters – chemicals that pass along signals from one neuron to the next in your nervous system. When endorphins are released, it generates a feel-good feeling that suppresses pain, much like taking a narcotic drug.

The Consequences of an Unhealthy Spine

Chiropractic adjustments are a form of proprioceptive stimulation that’s more intense and targeted than massage or exercise, at least where your nervous system is concerned. Chiropractic addresses the misalignments of your spine that impinge upon the healthy function of that crucial information superhighway of your nervous system – your spinal cord.

Every function of your body below your chin, every breath, every heartbeat, every movement and reaction to the world around you, even the activities within individual cells, is governed by the signals that pass from your brain down through your spinal cord.

When misalignments of your spine stretch or in any way impair your spinal cord, it’s function and ability to convey information is affected. This could cause pain, tingling, numbness in other parts of the body. It can inhibit the healthy function of organs and aggravate conditions such as asthma.

If a misaligned spine can cause these problems with your nervous system, should intervention to correct that misalignment not then serve to improve nervous system function and your overall health?

The Cascade Effect of Chiropractic Adjustments

This is what a team of researchers set out to determine. They reviewed evidence from manual therapy studies, basic science, and animal studies – 68 studies in all – and published their conclusions a year ago in a report with the weighty title Measureable changes in the neuro-endocrinal mechanism following spinal manipulation.

The authors of this study concluded the following:

“An increasing number of studies show that the effects of spinal manipulation are beyond biomechanical changes only.”

“Spinal manipulation has the potential to initiate a cascade of neurophysical responses in the peripheral and central nervous systems.” In other words, positive responses with other parts and systems of your body.

“Spinal manipulation has the potential to be used as a tool in restoring the autonomic nervous system balance.” The autonomic is the part of your nervous system that you don’t consciously direct – such as your breathing, heartbeat, and digestive processes.

“Spinal manipulation influences tissue healing through reduction of the inflammatory response.”

Addressing Much More Than Just Back Pain

The authors cited a number of other positive effects that drill down into the nitty gritty of your nervous system’s biochemical function, but in summary, they conclude that spinal manipulation has a role to play “in the treatment of a wide array of disorders.” These may include fibromyalgia, auto-immune diseases, diabetes, gastro-intestinal disorders, cardiovascular problems, and asthma.

Chiropractic adjustments do much more than just trigger the release of those feel-good endorphins.

When you come in for your regular adjustment, we are addressing more than the obvious complaint that brought you to our door. Your body, and your overall health, is benefiting in other less obvious ways, too.

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