Chiropractic is a complementary and alternative health care profession that focuses on the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of disorders of the neuro-musculoskeletal system and its effects on general health. The practice of chiropractic is a drug-free, hands-on approach to the medical field, and is typically recognized for its procedure of spinal manipulation known as “adjustments.” The purpose of this care is to apply manual force to restore joint mobility to areas of the body that are restricted in their movement and are thus causing discomforts. Such discomforts may be the result of tissue injury, which can be caused by anything from a car accident to improper posture to consistent daily stress, and so forth. When tissues are injured, they can cause inflammation, pain, and limited functionality. By providing spinal manipulation to affected area, mobility is restored, thus alleviating and healing the muscle strains causing the discomfort. In the United States, between 70% to 80% of all adults experience low back pain at some point in their lives, and more than a third of Americans suffer from some sort of chronic pain. Most who seek this care receive therapy to treat discomforts such as back pain, joint pain, neck pain and headaches; however, chiropractors are not limited to just spinal cord manipulations. They also have the skills to broadly diagnose patients, and often overlap several health care professions, such as message therapy, osteopathy and physical therapy. Aside from the typical “chiropractic adjustments,” many may also offer therapeutic and rehabilitative exercises, as well as nutritional, dietary, and lifestyle counseling. While the practice of chiropractic is still a largely debated and reviewed treatment, it continues to grow in the United States and other countries.
Health care at the time/History
The first roots of chiropractic care was found in China and Greece, and can be traced all the way back to 2700 B.C. and 1500 B.C. Records of this time period indicated the successful manipulation of the spine in order to resolve lower back pain. Later writings also hinted at the idea that all diseases were somehow related to the spinal cord. Chiropractic care in United States stemmed from MD Andrew Taylor Still, who disagreed with the growing dependability on drugs for treating disorders and illnesses, and started to venture into alternative methods. Still began to study the fields of hypnosis and bonesetting. In the 19th century, bonesetting was a common part-time work, often used by clients that were disregarded by medically trained professionals because their problems seemed insignificant or treatable with the use of aspirins. Bonesetters were known to treat such “inconsequential ailments” by mending bones and treating misaligned joints. In the United States, the earliest use of chiropractic treatment dates back to Iowa in 1895 when Daniel D. Palmer performed the first set of adjustments to a deaf man. The treatment quickly gained attention when the deaf man, known as Harry Lillard, reported to have better hearing after a few days later of receiving treatments from Palmer. His success with Lillard led him to theorize that misaligned vertebrae affected blood flow throughout the body, which can sometimes result in illnesses. He concluded that realigning the spine would restore health. Like Still, Palmer disagreed with the growing dependency on drugs for remedies, and both described the body as a “machine” that can be “tweaked” to produce a drugless cure. The main difference between both fields is that osteopaths believed that illnesses were caused from misaligned spines, which put pressure on blood vessels, while chiropractors believed illnesses were caused from nerves that were compressed by the spine. D.D. Palmer’s discovery and theory led him to the opening of Palmer School of Chiropractic in 1898, however, he struggled to gain credibility as he could not provide enough evidence...
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