Chiropractic offers gentle, effective, and timesaving approaches to treat your low back pain. Chiropractors use a drugless, non-surgical system of health care. One important principle of chiropractic involves returning motion to the spine. Restricted spinal motion—when the spine doesn’t move as well as it should – can cause back pain.
Chiropractors use spinal manipulation (or adjusting the spine) as a means of correcting spinal joint restrictions and relieving pain, treating disc injuries, improving alignment and posture, and promoting overall health.
Chiropractic has developed a number of treatment approaches in addition to traditional spinal adjustments.
These treatment approaches help chiropractors address a wide range of back pain conditions.
- Low back conditions that respond to chiropractic care include:
- Back sprain injuries
- Spinal joint restriction syndromes
- Facet joint sprain
- Sacroiliac sprain
- Lumbar disc injuries that don’t require surgery
- Spinal stenosis
- Various types of chronic low back pain
Depending on you diagnosis a number of different techniques may be chosen.
Specific Spinal manipulation: Sometimes called spinal adjusting, spinal manipulation is an active, hands-on care that returns motion to the spine. With a return of normal spinal mechanics, muscles relax and pain is resolved. In specific spinal manipulation, the chiropractor identifies the joints that are restricted or show abnormal motion. He or she then returns motion to the joint with a gentle thrusting technique.
Flexion Distraction technique: This is a gentle, non-thrusting type of spinal manipulation. This treatment is still hands-on, utilising a specialised table to assist the chiropractor. It’s especially useful in treating bulging discs and ruptured (herniated) discs.
Instrument-assisted manipulation: This is another non-thrusting technique. Using a hand-held instrument, the chiropractor can apply force without thrusting into the spine. This is especially appropriate in older patients with degenerative joint syndrome and/or osteoporosis.
To treat your back pain, the chiropractor may also use various manual therapies. These are used to treat soft tissue (ligaments and muscles, for example) injuries. Some possible manual therapies are:
Trigger point therapy: The chiropractor identifies specific hypertonic (tight), painful points on a muscle. Then applies direct pressure (using the fingers) on these points to relieve the tension.
Dry Needling (western Acupuncture): Myofascial trigger point dry needling is a treatment to restore proper function to abnormally behaving muscles. These muscles become painful with nodules also called knots and tight bands of muscle that can be painful locally or send pain signals to other locations. The muscles, which contain these abnormal areas are “locked” and cannot function normally, which causes restriction of movement and chronic pain. This treatment allows the muscle contracture to release to its normal length and the circulation to improve.
Manual joint stretching and resistance techniques
Therapeutic massage: To reinforce the improved joint mechanics (return of normal spinal motion), your chiropractor will prescribe therapeutic exercises.