09 Jul Chiropractic Treatment in San Diego
There are many therapeutic manipulations and therapies used by chiropractors. While their main form of manipulation therapy is spinal manipulation, many chiropractors use exercise, stretching, traction, and soft tissue manipulation in practice. In addition, several modalities are used by chiropractors, such as TENS units, heat/cold therapy, muscle stimulation, and ultrasound therapy.
Therapeutic Exercise – Chiropractors often prescribe certain strengthening exercises for their patients with neck, back, and
extremity problems. These exercises are used to decrease pain, promote joint health, prevent muscle deterioration, increase stability, strength, and motion, and protect from new or recurring injuries. Until you can do them on your own, your San Diego chiropractor will show you how the exercises are done, as well as supervise you during the process. Research studies show that people who follow their chiropractor’s exercise instructions heal much faster than those who do not.
Therapeutic Stretches – Therapeutic stretching is used to prevent scar tissue from forming after an injury. Once the injury has healed, you should maintain a regular stretching program that keeps your tissues flexible, protects from new injury, and improves mobility. Your chiropractor will instruct you on the proper stretching techniques and then supervise you until you can safely perform them on your own.
Soft Tissue Manual Therapy – Chiropractors in San Diego use many hands-on soft tissue therapies to assist with functioning of soft tissues, such as ligaments, tendons, muscles, and joint capsules. These therapies include active release technique (ART), which is also called “pin and stretch,” as well as the Graston technique, which is an instrument-assisted soft tissue mobilization maneuver.
Traction – This involves the use of devices applied to distract certain areas of the spine. Traction is a form of treatment that separates the vertebrae, which results in disc decompression and elimination of nerve root pressure.
Physical Therapy Modalities
Muscle Stimulation – This therapy uses light electrical pulses transmitted to specified areas of the body through skin electrodes. There are several forms of electrical stimulation, and some are more helpful for pain relief or inflammation reduction, whereas others are best for treating muscle spasms and reducing muscle atrophy.
TENS – The transcutaneous electric nerve stimulation (TENS) unit is a portable, battery-operated device that can be used to control pain and stimulate the muscle. Used for patients who have episodic severe, acute pain, the TENS sends variable intensities of electric current to the targeted area.
Ice and Heat – Practitioners have used ice and heat to treat pain for many decades. Ice therapy is beneficial for reducing swelling and controlling pain immediately after the injury. Heat therapy is often used to increase circulation, relax the muscles, and provide relief for chronic pain. Some chiropractors use a combination of ice and heat.
Ultrasound – One form of deep heat therapy is therapeutic ultrasound, which is created by sound waves. The sounds waves are applied to soft tissues and joints to form a “micro-massage,” which reduces swelling, decreases pain and stiffness, increases blood flow, and relieves muscle spasms.
Lifestyle Modification – Because good health involves more than just the absence of pain, lifestyle choices people make can greatly affect their long-term health. The chiropractor works with the patient, providing counseling regarding lifestyle choices. Over time, unhealthy choices can lead to serious health problems. Therefore, it is important to adopt healthy behaviors and choices to promote positive health, which include avoiding smoking and stress, eating a healthy diet, getting regular exercise, and maintaining proper posture.