Tuesday, October 14, 2014


Introduction to Chiropractic Care

It is a healing practice that is a combination of an exceptional healing philosophy, science, and artistic expressions. The philosophy behind chiropractics is simple. It works on the principle that the human body has the amazing power to heal itself. There is a mutual agreement between the ancient systems of healing and modern scientific studies that the human body has organizing intelligence that is in control of the functions and coordination of all cells in the body. In chiropractics, it is referred to as innate intelligence. This intelligence is in control of several functions in the body such as chemical balance, digestion, breathing, and heartbeat. These processes are taking place every second in our body without us even realizing it. It allows us to listen, think, talk and walk without conscience awareness of all the complicated interactions that take place for these processes to occur inside our bodies. 
It is a health profession that specializes in diagnosis, treatment and prevention of the disorders that may occur in the musculoskeletal system and the implications of these disorders on the nervous system and health of a person. The practitioners of chiropractic largely rely on the non-invasive methods of treatment and refer patients to surgery or medication if the need be. This practice works even better because chiropractors promote healthy lifestyles to their patients such as physical activity, healthy diet, excess stress, and non-smoking. 

How Is Chiropractic A More Cost Effective Option?

Many researches have been conducted to study the cost effectiveness of chiropractic practice and other natural treatment alternative such as massage, acupuncture, and physiotherapy compared to conventional methods of medicine. 2012 systemic review concluded the therapy of spinal manipulation to be more cost-effective for lower back and neck pain in comparison to exercise, physiotherapy, and general practitioner care.
A study conducted in 2007 compared the costs of patient care under the treatment of a chiropractor as their PCP (Primary care Physician) to cost of care under a medical doctor. After studying 70,000 members over a period of 7 years, the cost of hospital admission was decreased by 60.2%, the cost per day of a hospital was lowered by 59% and the outpatient procedures and surgeries went down by 62%. Even the costs linked to pharmaceuticals went down by an astonishing 85% as compared to conventionally driven medical care. All these comparisons were studies during the same time duration, using the same products for health maintenance, and same geography.
The result being that now the medical industry and insurance providers have accepted chiropractic care as a cost effective and viable treatment for lower back and neck pain. 

The Premises of Chiropractic

Following are the basis of chiropractic practice:
  • The human body is a self regulating and self healing organism.
  • The master remote control of the body lies within the nervous system with controls all functions and cells of the body including the capability of the body to self regulate and self heal.
  • Interference in the functions of the nervous system causes the body to lose its ability to self regulate or self heal.
  • The interference of the nervous system can be caused by disfunctioning or/and displaced vertebra in the spine called a “subluxation” in chiropractic.
  • When the nervous system and spine are subluxated, the body loses its ability to properly self regulate or self heal.
  • The purpose of chiropractics is to locate and heal the subluxation, using the adjustments of chiropractic, allowing the human body to regain its ability to properly self-regulate and self-heal. 

Non-Invasive Method of Treatment

Chiropractics is not only effective, but it is also safe. In the last two decades, many independent and controlled studies have been conducted that show that chiropractics is effective and safe for the treatment of headaches, neck pain, low back pain and other various conditions related to the spine. 
Based on these studies, there has been a consensus that chiropractic treatment should be the first choice for the majority of spinal problems. The extent of relief and benefit can vary depending on the condition of individual patients and for how long their conditioned existed. 

For more information on Dr. Joseph Mills, visit: www.westhillspaincenter.com or call: 631-659-2980


Dr. Zagst, D. The Cost-effectiveness of chiropractic care vs. medical care. Retrieved from < <http://www.naturalnews.com/036129_chiropractic_medical_care_cost_effectiveness.html#>
The chiropractic premise. Retrieved from < http://www.chiropractic-constable.com/chiropractic-and-you/>
Dr. Engelbrecht, R. Chiropractic. Non-invasive, low risk and cost-effective. Retrieved from < http://www.health24.com/Medical/Backache/Treatment-options/Chiropractic-non-invasive-low-risk-and-cost-effective-20120721>
What is chiropractic? Retrieved from < http://lightchiro.com.au/chiropractic/what-is-chiropractic/>


Imagine you are at your home and there is a knock at your door, you open the door and there is someone telling that you house is on fire, would you ask that person to leave? Obviously not! But that is what you are doing every time you have a headache and you pop a pain killer.  You tell the pain to go away without trying to address its root cause.
We all have experience headaches at some point in time and we know that they can be terrible. There is only a little good that some can say about the skull-pounding, crushing, and throbbing pain that make people moan and wince. Yet headaches can tell you a lot about yourself. They can be an indication of an underlying problem and something that you might be doing which is not good for your health. Sometimes they can also warn you about serious and underlying illnesses. 

A headache could be an individual characteristic such as migraine or tension headache, or an indication of an organic disorder or a complicated or serious disorder. There could be multiple variations or causes of headaches. People usually have two types of headaches: those that are caused due to the swelling of blood vessels present in the tissues around the head, and those that are caused due to strain or muscle tension, also called muscle headaches. 

Both these types of headaches could be the symptom that you are doing something wrong in your daily life that is causing harm and stress to your body. Lifestyle choices that can be the cause of your headaches include: 

  • Eyestrain
  • Poor posture at work
  • Dehydration
  • Insufficient nourishment

The headaches could be your body telling you something and you just don’t want to treat them with medication. If you are getting regular headaches then it is time that you start playing detective and try to figure out the root cause of it.
Some people experience headaches rarely, while for some these episodes happen frequently, often caused due to the following:
  • Congested Sinuses
  • Smoking
  • Alcohol
  • Dependency on drugs that relieve pain
  • Noise
  • Imbalances in hormones
  • Weather (particularly the changes in barometric pressure)
  • Problems with vision
  • Allergies, including sensitivities and food allergies
  • Dehydration
  • Lack of sleep
  • Fatigue
  •  Stress
It is astounding that most people try to hide their headache symptoms with painkillers rather than trying to cure the source of it. One of the simplest ways to cure a headache is to find its root cause. In order to do that you can buy a small notebook and record in it all your activities and that you drink and eat and also your emotions. For example, if you have been stressed at work, then you can write something like, “Got upset about missing a deadline at work” in your notebook. 

Often the pain is triggered by the drinks and food that you consumed a day or two before the actual pain manifested, so it might take you a few weeks before you start understanding the patterns. Also make sure that you add the description of your pain in your diary such as how the headache felt like. Was it a sharp pain on one side, or was it a throbbing, dull sensation? The details can help in pinpointing the type of headaches so that you will be in a better position to treat them. 

If you are unable to understand a pattern and the headaches persist then it is time that you take your diary to your physician and tell them all about your headaches in detail. Don’t self medicate, no matter how feasible an option it may seem at the time. Over the counter pain killers can relieve your pain for a little while but they won’t do anything to stop them from coming back so in order to make sure that you don’t experience headaches again make sure that you seek professional help from your physician. 

For more information on Dr. Joseph Mills, visit: www.westhillspaincenter.com or call: 631-659-2980


Connealy, L. E. What your headache is trying to tell you. Retrieved from <http://www.humanevents.com/2012/11/15/what-your-headache-is-trying-to-tell-you/>


The therapy of spinal decompression involves the stretching of the spine with the help of traction tables or like motorized devices with the aim of relieving pain in back or leg. This procedure is also known as non-surgical decompression therapy.


The devices used for spinal decompression works on the exact basic principle of spinal traction that is offered by osteopaths, chiropractors and other trained health professionals. The goal of both decompression and traction therapy is to relieve pain and promote a healing environment for herniated, degenerated, or bulging disks.
It is a kind of traction therapy that is applied to spine in order to achieve several theoretical benefits such as:
  • Lowering the pressure in the disc to cause an influx of healing nutrients and other essential substances in the disc. 
  • Creating a negative intradiscal pressure in order to promote repositioning or retraction of the bulging or herniated disk. 

Conditions That Can Be Treated Using Spinal Decompression

Following are the conditions that can be treated using SD:

Bulging and Herniated disc

Discs are situated between the bones of spine also called vertebrae and their function is to absorb shock caused to spine. Annulus fibrosis is the outer disc of the wall and it surrounds a jelly like center called nucleus pulpous. Year of bending, twisting, lifting coughing sneezing, wear and tear can weaken the walls of the disc and cause a tear or bulge which causes pressure on the surrounding nerves. In this condition, all or part of the gelatinous center of a disc is forced from the weakened area of the pout wall which eventually results in irritation in nerve roots and back pain.
Use of spinal decompression therapy to as a cure for this condition helps take the pressure off the damaged discs to aid the disc bulge to shrink back to its original position and size.


This condition refers to the pain that a person feels along the sciatic nerve. The pain caused by this condition is generally felt in the buttocks, from where it further radiates down the leg. A sudden pain in your hip or lower back radiating to the back of the thigh and towards the leg might mean that you have a herniated (protruding) disc in spinal column which is pressing the roots of sciatic nerve. This condition is referred to as sciatica.
An important thing to know about sciatica is that it is a symptom of a condition – of something irritating or compressing the roots of the nerves that make up the sciatic nerve – rather than being a medical disorder or medical diagnosis in itself. This is important to know because often the underlying medical diagnosis needs to be treated in order to relieve the pain.

Degenerative Disc Disorder

This can also be treated with the therapy of spinal decompression. Vertebral bodies can move closer due to loss in the height of the disc and this condition can be aggravated by the spinal compression. This causes the nerves to compress and can cause other types of common back pains.
Using spinal decompression can reduce the pressure in the degenerated discs eliminating or reducing the painful symptoms.
Facet syndrome, neck pain, failure following a surgery or relapse, and spinal stenosis can also be treated by using Spinal decompression method.

Methods and Techniques

Following are the methods and techniques used in spinal decompression therapy:


This is the practice of applying gentle traction to spine by hanging upside down and it has been around for around 2,000 years. The principle behind this is when the body is inverted, the quantity of weight pulling on every level of the spine is directly proportional to the force required to gain proper alignment.


It is a massage therapy that places every joint through manual distraction, from the finger to spine. Manual distraction means that the pulling in done manually. While pulling a finger can be fairly easy, distracting the spine by pulling is not. So the skill and strength of the professional working on your back will determine the effectiveness of the therapy.


This is the most commonly used technique for spinal decompression, and majority of the chiropractics and physical therapists have this equipment in their offices. In this equipment there are two harnesses; one is meant for the hips and the other for the chest. The force applied externally can be easily controlled and the equipment can be set on intermittent and continuous pull. Most patients start with 50% of their body weight. The legs should be at 90 degrees from the upper body. If that does not work, then the table that the patient is lying on can be split in to so that the hips of the patient can move along with the pull. A typical session might last for about 10 to minutes and with each subsequent the pull is increase by approximately 10 pounds.


 For more information on Dr. Joseph Mills, visit: www.westhillspaincenter.com or call: 631-659-2980



Hefferon, S. PTA, CMT. What is it and will it work for you and your condition? Retrieved from <http://www.losethebackpain.com/treatments/spinal-decompression/>
What causes back and neck pain? Retrieved from <http://www.silvermanspine.com/treatable-conditions/>
E. Gay, R. MD, DC. All about spinal decompression therapy. Retrieved from <http://www.spine-health.com/treatment/chiropractic/all-about-spinal-decompression-therapy>