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How to Know If You Need a Chiropractic Adjustment

Going to the chiropractor is a safe and easy way to tackle back, neck or shoulder pain. From recurring headaches and migraines to problems with low immunity, chiropractors offer a battery of methods for promoting better all-around performance and health. 

When the Balance is Disrupted

As the body’s central supporting structure, the spine plays a critical role in your posture, balance, coordination and general movement. Unfortunately, factors such as aging, bad habits and jarring impact events like car accidents can disrupt the spine’s alignment. When this happens, your body may send you signals that all is not right. 

5 Early Warning Signs You Need to See a Chiropractor

The following five early warning signs may be your body’s way of telling you that you need to see a chiropractor.

1. Chronic Pain in Muscles or Joints

The entire musculoskeletal system can suffer when the spine is poorly aligned. Displaced discs can place extraordinary pressure on surrounding muscles and ligaments as these structures are forced to compensate or overwork. 

As they become increasingly overworked, problems like muscle spasms, recurring headaches, loss of flexibility, decreased range of motion, and many other health issues can occur. 

Spinal misalignment can also place undue stress on the joints. If your joints are stiff, sore, and challenging to move, alignment issues across the spine may be the underlying cause. Chiropractic adjustments can often relieve the secondary strain caused by joint dysfunction and support improvements in general joint movement

2. Persistent Neck Pain

Neck pain is a pervasive problem, and the drastic back-and-forth rocking motion of the head after an auto accident is one cause of pain and joint dysfunction at the neck. 

However, people can experience neck pain, even without being in a collision. Also, this discomfort can arise after having spent long hours and multiple days in a seated position, with the head craned over a laptop, computer screen or mobile phone.

3. Lower Back Pain

Like neck pain, lower back pain can result from jarring impact events or everyday life habits that place extraordinary stress on the spine. One of the most common causes of lower back pain is improper bending and lifting techniques. 

Improper lifting activities can stress the back in many ways. For instance, if the thigh muscles are overwhelmed, the lower back may have to compensate. Quadriceps muscles (the muscles traveling down the front of the thigh) that become sore are frequently overworked, leading to excruciating lower back pain.

With the proper stretching activities and the benefit of chiropractic adjustments or massage, bending will become more manageable, and discomfort will likely diminish. 

4. Chronic Headaches or Migraines

There are countless possible triggers for migraines and recurring headaches, and many of us are extremely sensitive to specific chemicals, strong smells, bright lights and loud sounds. Many other environmental factors can lead to headaches, as can neck, upper back and shoulder strain. 

The role of a chiropractor in headache relief is determining why these events are occurring. Muscle tension in the neck resulting from sedentary activities and mobile device use is a common cause of headaches. 

Most discomfort can instantly be relieved, and future headaches prevented with spinal adjustments, postural corrections and recommended lifestyle changes. 

5. Poor Ergonomic Habits

A good ergonomic design has been shown to increase production as well as promote well-being. If you are working somewhere with poor ergonomic designs or have developed poor ergonomic habits, your body will eventually cry foul.

Lower back and neck pain can result from using wrong chairs, floor mats, desk heights, screen heights and more. In instances of prolonged sitting, even having access to equipment that accommodates changes in elevation and increased range of movement can help. 

You can work with your chiropractor to optimize the benefits of any supporting equipment and establish the right ergonomic habits. A few things you can do on your own include ensuring that screens are kept at eye level to prevent neck and eye strain. 

It’s also a good idea to:

  • Position backrests on chairs with a modest recline
  • Keep keyboards an arm’s length away to limit the risks of carpal tunnel syndrome
  • Centrally align keyboards and monitors
  • Make regular changes in posture and elevation
  • Maintain relaxed shoulders while typing
  • Float the hands over keyboards, rather than resting them

Also, bear in mind – minor adjustments in ergonomic equipment and how recurring, repetitive tasks are performed can stave off many common musculoskeletal problems, prevent sudden injuries, and preserve the balance and alignment of the spine.

Benefits of Seeing a Chiropractor

Although many people visit chiropractors when dealing with impact injuries, chiropractic adjustments can undoubtedly provide a wealth of other benefits, including: 

  • Safe, hands-on therapy: Chiropractors use safe, hands-on therapies to address musculoskeletal problems, alleviate pain and promote remarkable improvements in immune functioning and overall health. 
  • An alternative to prescription pain meds: The treatments used by chiropractors are non-habit forming and effective. Because of this, chiropractic care can be an excellent alternative to prescription pain medications – and even many invasive surgeries. In fact, one recent study suggests that chiropractic patients are much less likely to have opioid prescriptions filled for back pain than are people who only work with their regular doctors. 
  • Individualized treatment plans: Chiropractic treatments are based on a thorough physical examination of a patient and their history at the start of care and is not a one-size-fits-all approach. Regimens are structured based on this collected information, with numerous therapies like massage, inversion, and even ultrasound being used to promote rapid pain relief and healing, along with improvements in well-being.
  • Improving the immune system: Your immune system is closely related to your spine. Studies show regular chiropractic care and adjustments benefit spinal health and restore the functioning of joints, thereby supporting the nervous system. As a result of improved mobility and better functioning of the body and spine, the treatments boost the immune system.
  • Addressing the problem head-on: Whereas conventional doctors might recommend bed rest and the use of painkillers, chiropractors work to determine precisely why pain exists and the different factors that have caused it. By treating pain at its underlying source, it’s possible to effectively support the body’s natural healing abilities and prevent many musculoskeletal issues from recurring. 
  • A wide range of helpful services: In addition to using hands-on adjustments or computer-assisted adjustments, many chiropractors also offer:
    • Recommendations for lifestyle changes
    • Recommendations for ergonomic work or home equipment
    • Nutritional guidance and supplemental support
    • Assistance in establishing manageable weight loss plans
    • Needs-specific stretching routines
    • Strength-building exercises for increased spinal support

How to Get Started with Chiropractic Care

With a vast range of therapeutic services and a commitment to identifying the true source of each person’s physical discomfort, Healing Hands Chiropractic provides natural, fast-acting and long-lasting relief to patients in Murfreesboro, Smyrna, Nolensville, Bell Buckle, and all other areas of Middle Tennessee!

We offer multiple options in care and always take a dynamic, customized approach to help our clients reach their health and wellness goals. If you would like to know more, please call us today to schedule your consultation appointment at 615-203-3505. Alternatively, you can schedule your appointment online.