There are many ways to adjust the spine. Most people new to Chiropractic expect a chiropractor to use his or her hands to manually adjust the spine and to hear that “pop” which is so often talked about. This is merely the change in gas pressure within the joint capsule, similar to a champagne cork popping. You may be surprised to learn that there are many non-manual adjusting techniques which don’t produce a “pop”. Some techniques utilise the force of gravity by using blocks underneath the pelvis in different configurations, another is the use of the Activator adjusting instrument or the use of a special table to assist the adjustment.
Which adjusting method is appropriate for your particular body type will depend on many factors including age and physical condition. We use a variety of adjusting methods at this clinic including manual adjustments and the very gentle low-force methods.
Adjustments are usually a pleasant experience. After being adjusted most patients report greater ease in moving, less pain and a sense of lightness and wellbeing.
LOW LEVEL LASER THERAPY
Low Level Laser Therapy is also known as Cold Laser or Photobiomodulation therapy. This is merely a difference in terminology and are the same treatment modality.
Laser is a very comfortable treatment modality used to treat many types of inflammatory conditions, relieve pain and stimulate tissue repair.
Whilst Laser has been around for a very long time, it is really only in the last decade that the more advanced Laser technology and training has been available to practitioners in Australia. It is well researched and works extremely well with Chiropractic. A recent study published in the Lancet medical journal showed when Chiropractic was combined with Laser therapy to treat neck pain, the participants gained double the improvement when compared to either Chiropractic or Laser alone.
How Does Laser Work
Our body requires sunlight to initiate a cellular reaction to produce vitamin D and plants require sunlight for tissue cells to photosynthesise and grow.
Low Level Laser Therapy targets injured tissue at a cellular level. Injured or diseased cells are not healthy cells. The light sources delivered by the laser stimulate a photochemical reaction within the tissue cells to restore normal biochemical function. These restored functions include a reduction in pain perception, inflammation, improved lymphatic drainage, micro-circulation and the stimulation of cellular or tissue repair. Tissue repair is a unique feature of Laser therapy not delivered by other physical therapy equipment.
It is a ‘cold’ laser as we are not burning or heating tissue like lasers used in cosmetic and surgical procedures. At this clinic we use a very advanced Laser – the Super Pulsed Multi Radiance MR4.
This Laser uses 3 light sources which are delivered in rapid pulses. Many lasers use one light source in a continuous beam. The advantage of 3 light sources is that they work in synergy to enhance the effects of each light source. The super pulsed delivery system can penetrate deeper and prevents heating of underlying deep tissues. The end result is a very powerful laser treatment without the effects of deep tissue heating. The MR4 is a very safe Laser which can be used over implants including metal plates and screws. Many patients feel anything from nothing at all to a slight tingling over the area being treated.
Dry Needling is a powerful tool using acupuncture needles to directly reset and de-activate myofascial trigger points within a muscle. Whilst we use the same equipment as an Acupuncturist, it is not the same. Acupuncturists use needles with a holistic approach to treat the body within the paradigm of Traditional Chinese Medicine.
Often muscles surrounding a dysfunctional joint behave or work inefficiently and muscular imbalances and poor movement patterns set in. The flow on effect is for muscles to form trigger points within the muscle fibres. These are the ‘knots’ you may feel in a muscle. Whether your muscle is over-working inappropriately or under-working inappropriately, the needle has a normalizing effect by relaxing, elongating and resetting the muscle.
There are many techniques to try to get muscles to reset including re-training exercises, massage techniques, taping and electrical stimulation.
Sometimes the superficial trigger points are easy to get to, but many times, those aren’t the ones driving the biomechanical system. We can get deeper into the muscle with a needle if we need to. This is one of the advantages of Dry Needling but on the whole, the results with Dry Needling are quick and mostly immediate.
It’s really important to de-activate trigger points. Active trigger points often cause localized or referred pain. Non-active trigger points also cause problems. Aside from pain, all trigger points potentially prevent relaxation and lengthening of muscles and hinder the circulation of nutrients to the muscle cells
NB: Dry Needling is not used on patients with significant needle phobias
NON SPINAL COMPLAINTS
Shoulders, Hips, Knees, & Elbows!
Chiropractors traditionally focused on the spine. Now we assess the body as a whole and treat many non-spinal problems within the musculoskeletal system. After all, everything is connected. There is no point adjusting a patient’s lower back if they have a hip or foot issue which is not being addressed. Likewise, neck issues with underlying shoulder problems need both areas treated. If we feel a referral is necessary, we will do so. We want results!