Phases Of Care
Since pain brings more people to this clinic than all other problems combined, I have chosen Pain Management as one of my subspecialties. It is important for you to realize that almost all forms of pain occur for a good reason.
Pain is our body’s way of telling us that it is being harmed or irritated in some way. Locating the exact cause of pain is not often an easy task, but is the key to successful treatment. If we can deal directly with the cause of the pain, then the pain will soon go away. The alternate approach of covering up the pain with pills is similar to the idea of turning off your smoke detector instead of putting out the fire.
Once we have identified the probable cause of the problems, we should then begin the corrective process. If a bone in the spine is out of alignment, then we will reposition it. If the problem is a stiff joint, then we loosen it. If it is too loose or unstable, then we stabilize it. Most often a combination of all of these has been developing for a number of years before you noticed symptoms. Correction takes time, and it takes your cooperation and perseverance. While you may achieve pain relief in a week or two, correction may take six weeks to several months or even years. Expectations should always be realistic; but the more work you put into this, the more you can expect to benefit.
The Chiropractic Adjustment
The joints in the body are designed to be movable. If they get stuck, they lose their natural lubrication as well as the diffusion of nutrients into the joint. As a result, degenerative changes develop. This is sometimes referred to as “subluxation degeneration.” Chiropractors adjust spinal joints not only to realign the vertebrae and take the “pinch” off the nerves, but also to restore function to the joints before irreversible decay sets in. The “popping” sound of the adjustment is merely a sudden rush of air into the joint space. Rarely is the procedure uncomfortable; and patients usually describe instant relief. Adjustments are good for the joints when done properly, but can become dangerous if attempted by unskilled hands.
Functional Strengthening & Rehabilitation
This final phase of most treatment programs can usually begin in the fifth or sixth week. Muscles become weakened rather quickly when you have been favoring a painful back; and it is very important to re-strengthen them as soon as possible. First, your physical capacity is measured and kept in our computer. Then a four to twelve week exercise program is completed under our direct supervision. Progress is measured and you will then be counseled on how to stay in shape at home.
Bronson Chiropractic ClinicSome patients, after completing a treatment program, prefer to be released from scheduled care. An agreement is made between the doctor and patient that if the symptoms surface again, then the patient will return as soon as possible for another treatment to “patch things up.” It is quite common for joint stiffness or muscle pain to return as a result of daily stresses and strains. Treatment is given on an “as needed” basis, and the patient is discharged again after each episode is treated.
It is much easier and less costly to “stay well” than it is to “get well.” Maintenance and prevention care really works, and we have many patients who will enthusiastically attest to this. Many of these healthy patients come in for “tune up” adjustments on a weekly or monthly basis. Many athletes come in prior to their game for performance optimization. At the very least, we believe that everyone should have a spinal check-up and adjustment every 6 months. We try to send out reminders, but it’s a lot easier if you can take responsibility for your (and your family’s) check-ups. This type of care usually is not covered on insurance plans. Ask about our “Wellness Discount Plans.”
A final note: Your cooperation is essential! We promise to do our part in restoring your health, but this responsibility begins with you. We must be able to count on you in several areas:
- Be here for all appointments or set make-up times
- Follow instructions for home therapy or exercises.
- Communicate your concerns or complaints directly to us. If you have a suggestion or a gripe, please speak up!
- Ask a lot of questions.
We look forward to serving you and your family!