Do you remember the adage, “As the twig is bent, so grows the tree”? We’ve all seen this phenomenon at work in nature, and it also applies to the human spine. When babies are developing and they begin to crawl, they are strengthening spinal muscles. This helps maintain their spines in proper alignment as they grow. That is one of the many reasons it is so important for babies to crawl before they walk. As babies begin to stand and walk, they inevitably fall, many times. One study found the average four years old will have fallen 4,000 times. Wow! That’s a lot. Ask a mom with young children and she will verify this statistic. These falls, some little and some big, can cause misalignments (subluxations) of the spine. Many of these subluxations will be self-corrected and cause no problems. But some subluxations are of a greater magnitude, and the spine will get “stuck” in that subluxated position. If this subluxation stays long term, the spine has to compensate by developing other subluxations and distortion patterns. Traumas, injuries, and impacts continue into childhood and adulthood. They can lead to further damage to the spine and extremity joints.
If the vertebra of the spine (or other joints) stays subluxated (tilted, shifted, rotated, or compressed), there will be increased pressure on the side of the greatest subluxation. If this subluxation stays, over time, there will be sustained, increasing pressure and irritation to the nerves which exit from in between the vertebra. This is also how osteoarthritis begins. The body detects this pressure differential and an electrical charge is initiated. This electrical charge does two things: #1- It interferes with nerve flow from the nerve which exits from in between two vertebra and supplies organs, tissues, muscles, and joints. #2- It attracts calcium from the system to be attached to the bone in the form of bone spurs. These spurs don’t usually cause direct pain, but rather are indicators of the degenerative process (arthritis) as the body tries to strengthen an area that is overworked and compressed. This is called arthritis and is how joint damage occurs. This process of subluxation-degeneration is the cause of degenerative arthritis. It’s not inherited and not age-related. It’s considered the “garden variety” or most common of all types of arthritis. I often hear people say that they have arthritis which is “normal” for their age. It may be common, but it is not “normal”. I have seen arthritis of the spine in people as young as their early 20’s and many folks with no arthritis in their upper 70’s. It has much more to do with how much trauma they have had and how well their spine was cared for. We now know that chiropractic should begin at birth and continue throughout one’s entire lifetime. It’s not about whether you hurt or not. It’s about maintaining the optimum function of your nervous system and joints.
While chiropractic is not a cure or treatment for arthritis, it is very common to see the progression of arthritis slowed and often reversed as a result of chiropractic adjustments. It’s safe and effective! What’s not to love? For those who have significant arthritis, we often add Cold Laser to accelerate the repair of the injured or damaged joint. Cold Laser has been an amazing addition to chiropractic care here in the office.
Who do you know that could benefit from chiropractic care? Mention this blog for your complimentary consultation and exam ($75 value!) to see if chiropractic can help you!* Call us today at (512) 346-3536 or request an appointment here.
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