During your visit, your doctor of chiropractic will perform exams to locate the source of your pain and will ask you questions about your current symptoms and remedies you may have already tried. In the physical exam, your doctor will observe your posture, range of motion, and perform various orthopedic tests. Your doctor will palpate your spine, note its curvature and alignment, and feel for muscle spasm.
During the neurological exam, your doctor will test your muscle strength, reflexes, and nerve sensations in your neck and back. In some instances, your chiropractor might order tests to help diagnose your condition. An x-ray can show decreased disc space, fractures, bone spurs, or arthritic degeneration.
A computerized axial tomography scan (a CT or CAT scan) or a magnetic resonance imaging test (an MRI) can show bulging discs and herniations. As conservative care doctors, a chiropractor’s scope of practice
does not include the use of drugs or surgery. If your chiropractor diagnoses a condition outside of this conservative scope, he or she will refer you to the appropriate medical physician or specialist.
Here Are Some of the Most Typical Causes of Neck and Back Pain:
Injury and Accidents: A sudden force moving of the head or neck in a direction and the “rebound” in the opposite direction is known as whiplash. The sudden “whipping” motion injures the surrounding and supporting tissues of the neck, head and mid to lower back. Muscles react by tightening and spasming, causing muscle fatigue, and resulting in pain and stiffness. Car accidents and certain impact injuries from sports are common causes of whiplash.
Degenerative Conditions: Osteoarthritis, spinal stenosis, and degenerative disc disease directly affect the spine. These degenerative conditions can be caused by previous injuries, repetitive motion, or wear-and-tear from daily activities.
Daily Life: Poor posture, obesity, and weak core muscles often cause spinal balances, causing the neck, mid and lower back to bend forward to compensate. Stress and emotional tension can cause muscles to tighten and contract, resulting in pain and stiffness.
How Can Chiropractic Help With Neck and Back Pain:
Neck and Back Adjustments: A spinal adjustment (also known as spinal manipulation) is a precise procedure applied to the joints of the neck or back, usually by hand or an instrument. A neck and back adjustment work to improve the mobility of the spine and to restore range of motion; it can also increase the movement of the adjoining muscles. Patients often notice an improved ability to tilt and turn the head, neck or back with a reduction of pain, soreness, and stiffness.
Nonsurgical Spinal Decompression:
Nonsurgical spinal decompression is a type of motorized traction that may help relieve neck and back pain. Spinal decompression works by gently stretching the spine. That changes the force and position of the spine. This will take the pressure off the spinal discs, which are gel-like cushions between the bones in your spine. Over time, negative pressure from this therapy may cause bulging or herniated discs to retract. That can take the pressure off the nerves and other structures in your spine. This, in turn, helps promote movement of water, oxygen, and nutrient-rich fluids into the discs so they can heal.
Chiropractor Therapy: During progressive therapy, you will practice a range of motion exercises to stretch and strengthen the muscles that support your neck and back. You’ll also learn how to improve your posture and range of motion needed to enhance your activities of daily living.
Of course, your chiropractor will develop a plan of care that may combine more than one type of treatment, depending on your personal needs. Make your appointment today!