2835 N. Sheffield Ave., Suite 411
Chicago, IL 60657
“To be dependent on a single method is a tragedy. We should know
as many methods as possible & never be dependent on just one”.
Karel Lewit, M.D., Neurology Professor, Prague School of Manual Medicine
- You Are Here:
The cornerstone of chiropractic health treatment is spinal and extremity joint manipulation, often called the “adjustment”. This may involve either gentle pressure, or a quick, precise thrust to restore normal motion and alignment to joints that have become misaligned, stiff, restricted, or “locked up”. Formerly called the “vertebral subluxation complex” or “subluxation”, doctors now refer to this condition of joint misalignment or restriction as “spinal biomechanical lesions”.
Spinal biomechanical lesions are problematic because when spinal or extremity joints become restricted or misaligned, tension is created in the body. Tension anywhere in the body causes pain and altered nervous system function. These pain signals cause your nerves to become irritated, which causes more pain, more tension, and muscle spasm. Because your central nervous system controls every cell, tissue, and organ in your body, spinal biomechanical lesions can cause a wide range of health problems and symptoms including: asthma, allergies, ulcers & reflux, anxiety, depression, and fatigue. Many factors of modern living can cause your joints and muscles to become tense, restricted, and misaligned. Some common causes include stress, poor posture, repetitive motions, prolonged sitting & standing without breaks, poor sleep habits, improper lifting, lack of exercise, poor nutrition, and poor form during exercise and at the gym.
The adjustment is an effective treatment for subluxations, and is a highly technical orthopedic procedure that may be performed by your chiropractic physician on all joints of the body including:
- Joints of the cervical spine (neck)
- Joints of the thoracic spine (middle back, ribs, and shoulder blades or “scapulae”)
- Joints of the lumbar spine (low back) and pelvis (sacroiliac joints, and coccyx or “tailbone”)
- Extremity joints (jaw or “TMJ”, shoulder, elbow, hand, wrist, hip, knee, ankle, and foot)
While manipulation may be performed by other physicians, Doctors of Chiropractic have the most extensive experience and education in specific joint manipulation, performing 94% of the spinal manipulations in the United States. Numerous scientific studies have proven the efficacy, safety, cost-effectiveness and high levels of patient satisfaction of spinal manipulation. As a result, it is one of only two treatment protocols given the highest recommendation for the treatment of low back pain by the Agency for Health Care and Policy Research (AHCPR), an arm of the US Department of Health and Human Services. For more information about spinal manipulation, see Information & Research on Chiropractic.
Although most patients receive traditional manual (“hands-on”) adjustments, we also offer “low force” adjustments, preformed with a highly advanced instrument. Some patients are familiar with these instrument adjustment techniques, which are often referred to as “activator”, “pro-adjustor”, or “impulse adjusting”. These low-force adjustments are extremely gentle and precise, and are not associated with any “cracking” or “popping” sounds. Experience has shown us that instrument adjusting can be especially effective when used in combination with manual adjusting. In other instances, instrument adjusting may be used as an alternative to manual adjusting. As with all of our treatment options, the doctor will be happy to discuss with you which adjusting techniques would be best for your particular condition.