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What is chiropractic?

What is Chiropractic - Video Message


Chiropractic’ comes from the Greek word Chiropraktikos, meaning ‘done by hand’. Today, the World Federation of Chiropractic defines it as: ‘A health profession concerned with the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of mechanical disorders of the musculoskeletal system and the effects of these disorders on the function of the nervous system and general health’.

In other words, chiropractic is defined as a health care service that emphasizes the structural integrity of the body, and concerns for those health disorders related to the spine and nervous system.

What is chiropractic based on?

Chiropractic manipulationChiropractic is based on the scientific fact that your nervous system controls the function of virtually every cell, tissue, organ and system of your body.

While the brain is protected by the skull, the spinal cord, covered by 24 moving vertebrae, is more vulnerable. When these bones lose their normal motion or position (which may be caused by factors such as accidents, poor diet, repetitive strain, lack of exercise, poor posture and anxiety), they can irritate the spinal cord and the nerves branching out of it. This spinal nerve stress can lead to the symptoms of discomfort, pain and even disease which are a warning that the body is not functioning properly.

Also, this can disrupt the function of the tissues or organs these nerves control. Depending on where the nerve irritation has occurred in your spine, your symptoms may include the following:

  • cervicogenic headaches,
  • neck pain,
  • back pain,
  • shoulder, arm, wrist and hand pain,
  • hip, leg, knee, ankle and foot pain.

This is because the irritation of the nerve in one area can sometimes lead to pain (known as ‘referred’ pain) in other parts of the body.

Chiropractic locates these areas of spinal malfunction and corrects them to allow the body to heal itself (which we normally recognise in its ability to heal bruises, cuts and broken bones).