Affecting about 80 percent of the population at one time or another, back pain is something most people are personally familiar with. An increasingly common pain management technique many patients turn to for relief is chiropractic care. First used on patients for therapeutic purposes by Daniel Palmer in the late 1800s, chiropractic manipulations and services are now performed on nearly 20 million patients each year in the United States.
Types of Back Pain Chiropractic Care May Help Ease
Various studies have found that the manipulations commonly performed by chiropractors may help manage low back pain (LBP) due to herniated discs. These spongy discs between the spine sometimes become damaged to the point where inner disc material pushes outward and presses on nerves. Non-specific low back pain, in particular, tends to respond well to such manipulations. Chiropractic care may also help manage back pain due to:
- Some degree of nerve damage (radiculopathy)
- Muscle tightness or stiffness
How Chiropractic Manipulations Reduce Back Pain
Chiropractic adjustments or manipulations are performed in a way that encourages an increase in range of motion in the spine and a reduction of nerve irritation. During spinal manipulations, patients may receive high velocity short-lever arm thrusts targeting a specific vertebra or pressure may be applied in a way that’s gentler or combined with massage techniques. Joint pressure may be reduced when adjustments trigger the release of oxygen, nitrogen, and carbon dioxide (joint cavitation). Adjustments also reduce back pain by restoring the spine’s natural alignment.
Related Therapeutic Procedures
Chiropractors often use techniques, such as the application of ice and heat, to further ease back pain and encourage tissue healing. Massage therapy may also be done prior to adjustments being performed to ease muscle tension. Doing so often makes back-supporting muscles more likely to respond to chiropractic manipulations. Patients are sometime taught how to safely perform stretches and exercises between sessions to promote healing and rejuvenation.
Spinal Decompression for Back Pain Management
Performed on a specially designed traction table, spinal decompression is a technique that involves specific manipulations of the lower spine. The purpose of these adjustments is to relieve nerve pressure. During a session, a harness is placed around the hips to provide support. The lower half of the table moves while the top part remains fixed. Adjustments are made in a way so that a patient will feel the stretch while remaining comfortable.
Spinal decompression can provide relief by gently easing the herniated or bulging part of the disc back into its normal place within the disc and improving circulation. Increased circulation encourages the flow of nutrients to the affected area of the spine. This technique may ease back pain related to:
- Degenerative disc disease
- Disc herniation or slippage (spondylolisthesis)
- Spinal stenosis
- Non-specific low back pain
- Recurring issues with failed back surgery
See if chiropractic care is right for you by visiting LaGrange Chiropractic. We offer a wide range of services designed to minimize back pain. You’ll receive a thorough evaluation and benefit from a personalized treatment plan based on your pain management goals. Contact us today to schedule an appointment.