Chiropractic treatment focuses particularly on the spine and musculoskeletal system. Chiropractors manipulate vertebrae and the bones and joints around the spine, with the aim of reducing pain and increasing mobility. They may also use other techniques like acupuncture and give advice on exercises that can help ease pain and improve the health of the spine.
Chiropractor Dr Maria Madge explains what a Chiropractor is, their qualifications and the difference between a Chiropractor and an Osteopath.
Chiropractors are primary health care professionals. They are the third largest after medical and dentistry, with 10 million visits to chiropractors each year. Chiropractic care is mainly concerned with joints, muscles, and nerves, but particularly with the spine. When the spine doesn't move as well as it should, pain can be caused. Issues with the spine can also mean the muscles and joints in the whole body don't move as they should, which can cause local inflammation.
The Chiropractor will try to realign the spine and restore normal function to it. This chiropractic treatment will hopefully take away the aches and pains from affected areas. They apply a chiropractic adjustment, which are movements that manipulate the vertebrae on the spine, and also focus on specific areas to increase the movement of the joints. Chiropractors also practice soft tissue work or massage around certain areas, depending on what the problem is, and deal with trigger points which cause a lot of pain up and down the spine. Needling is also used, which is similar to acupuncture, and this helps with very tight muscles. Chiropractors may also use a piece of kit called an Activator which sends a gentle impulse to the spine to try and increase mobility.