Don't I Need a Chiropractor?
By Dean Moyer
Author of Rebuild Your Back
Can rebuilding your back actually take the place of regular treatment by a trained chiropractor? Or, for that matter, will your back fall into total disrepair if you neglect your monthly chiropractic adjustment?
And what about emergencies? Come on... surely you need a chiropractor if you have lower back pain?
Well, it may surprise you but a chiropractor is the last person you should see if you have back pain (or anything else for that matter) and what's more... a chiropractor can do absolutely nothing to repair your back.
Why Not a Chiropractor?
Chiropractors perform a type of physical therapy known as spinal manipulation. This spinal manipulation is a very aggressive and violent method of moving the bones of your spine - supposedly - back into alignment. (Or, as some claim, to get stuck vertebrae moving again.)
But wait a minute... if you're like 90% of us... you don't have a bone problem at all. What you have is a SUPPORT STRUCTURE problem, which simply means that something is wrong with the muscles, discs and ligaments surrounding your spine... rather than something being wrong with the bones themselves.
You see, the bones of the spine do not support themselves. They are supported by the surrounding soft tissue... namely the muscles, ligaments, tendons and discs that I just mentioned. If something is wrong with these surrounding SUPPORT STRUCTURES, no amount of adjusting or manipulating the bones is going to change that.
Here's the Deal
I like to compare it to a brick wall. As you know, when a brick wall is new, all the bricks line up nice and straight. They line up that way because they are held by the mortar between each brick. If the mortar breaks down the bricks will start to shift and sag and pretty soon they will be out of alignment. You can move the bricks all you want but they won’t stay in alignment until you repair the mortar. Repair the support structure and the bricks will once again remain in alignment.
The bones of the spine are held in alignment in exactly the same way. They are held in whatever position the disks, ligaments and muscles hold them in. If something is out of alignment it is because of collapsed disks, shortened ligaments and weak muscles. It has nothing to do with the bones themselves.
Chiropractors Cannot Align Your Spine
Moving the bones once a month will not correct the problem. The bones will simply return to whatever position the support structure dictates even before you leave the doctor’s office.
On the other hand, if you restore the disks, ligaments and muscles you will restore the alignment of your spine. It's that simple. That's what rebuilding your back is all about and anything less is really just a waste of time.
So, if the chiropractor isn't correcting the alignment of your spine, just what is he doing? We'll take a closer look at that next...
About the Author
Rebuild Your Back
Rebuild Your Neck
The Pain Relief Manual
- Book: "Inside Chiropractic: A Patient's Guide" by Samuel Homola, DC 1999 Prometheus Books
- Book: "Bonesetting, Chiropractic, and Cultism" by Samuel Homola, DC 1963
- Scientific American Frontiers: Dr. John Badanes DC, PharmD
- A Different Way To Heal
- Chirotalk: The Skeptical Chiropractic Discussion Forum
Last updated: July 28, 2007