Chiropractic helps to prevent spinal degeneration much like good alignment reduces uneven wear and tear on car tires. Abnormal spinal movement mirrors altered car axle alignment. People generally understand the value of axle and wheel alignment as they contribute to strong, durable tires. Altered axle alignment increases uneven wear and tear on tires and compromises the strength, durability, and efficiency of the entire vehicle. A similar relationship exists within the body through spinal movement and alignment. Joint hypomobility, or reduction in joint range of motion, can cause joints to prematurely degenerate.
Decreased spinal joint mobility accelerates the degenerative process and diminishes the joint’s strength and functional capability. The biggest challenge of spinal joint degeneration comes from the permanency attached to the process. Spinal joint degeneration cannot be reversed and continues to worsen if not addressed appropriately. Theoretically, Chiropractors can help to prevent and even stop the degenerative process by improving alignment and mobility in specific joints through Chiropractic adjustments. It is thought that this is accomplished by gapping spinal joints and breaking up adhesions.
A 2010 study in the Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics connects the damaging effects of hypomobility (reduced mobility) to spinal degeneration. The result of 4 weeks of hypomobility of spinal joints was articular surface degeneration and the result of 8 weeks of hypomobility of spinal joints was osteophyte formation. Joint adhesions make up the early stage of degeneration. Chiropractic adjustments likely reduce adhesion formation in a damaged joint by inducing motion into the spinal segment. An absence of joint movement produces long-lasting adhesion formation which eventually turns into one of the most prevalent and degenerative conditions known as osteoarthritis.
Osteoarthritis of the spine torments large numbers of people and is one of the most significant causes of persistent pain and disability in the world today. Osteoarthritis has become so common that many assume degeneration simply exists as part of the normal aging process. The plague of osteoarthritis advances quickly and often deforms and disables spinal function. Up to fifty percent of individuals experience arthritic back pain at some point in their lives. Back pain represents a common plague on health, yet limited information and solutions await people suffering from the development of spinal degeneration; which would be frequently referred to as low back pain and neck pain.
The progression of persistent pain and disability due to osteoarthritis also appear to dramatically increase in coming years. A commonly accepted solution in the current health care model involves the use of dangerous opioids. Conventional allopathic medicine carries little information or solutions to help reduce the progression of this disease process. Chiropractic represents one of the only true solutions which address the cause of the problem. Focusing on the maintenance of the mechanical workings of the spine serves as the most effective approach to preventing degenerative wear and tear of the human spine. Helping to normalise car axle alignment produces a great metaphor to describe the value of Chiropractic adjustments for improving the degenerative process. People certainly take an avid interest in ensuring their vehicle’s performance and value do not unnecessarily deteriorate. A person’s spine and long-term health deserve so much more than a replaceable vehicle. Chiropractic works.
J Manipulative Physiol Ther. 2010 Sep;33(7):508-18. Zygapophyseal joint adhesions after induced hypomobility.
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