As you get older, you may find yourself experiencing pain in areas you never had before. Oftentimes, this pain emerges as a result of arthritis, which can affect not only the joints in your hands and knees but even your spinal column.
Fortunately, a skilled chiropractor can provide gentle, non-invasive care to meet your arthritis pain relief needs.
Diagnosis of Arthritis
There are many types of arthritis (a broad term for joint disease) that can afflict you as age sets in.
Some of the most common forms include osteoarthritis (joint pain caused by bones rubbing together due to a breakdown of cartilage), rheumatoid arthritis (joint pain caused by an inflammation resulting from the immune system attacking the body’s joints), and psoriatic arthritis (joint pain caused in connection with the autoimmune disease psoriasis).
Arthritis symptoms include pain and swelling in your joints, stiffness, and a decreased range of motion as a result of these other ailments.
Whichever form of arthritis you have, a chiropractor can discuss your medical history with you and perform a physical examination in order to provide a diagnosis of your joint pain condition. Depending on the type of testing needed, a chiropractor may refer you to an arthritis specialist (such as a rheumatologist) for X-rays or MRIs.
Once your specific type of arthritis has been diagnosed, your chiropractor can work alone or co-manage your case with your primary care doctor or another medical doctor to provide relief for your arthritic symptoms.
If you are formally diagnosed with any type of arthritis, you can expect to receive a prescription for medication that will reduce your out-of-control inflammation and decrease the amount of pain from arthritis that you experience.
In addition, there are plenty of ways a chiropractor can provide care for you, and successful chiropractic treatment for arthritis may be able to reduce your dependence on prescription drugs. Through a combination of gentle, neurologically-based treatments, a well-trained chiropractor can help you manage pain better, maintain an improved range of motion, and live a healthier life through an appropriate diet and low-impact exercise.
Gentle Spinal Adjustment
The treatment perhaps most commonly associated with chiropractic care is spinal manipulation, which is usually what people are referring to when they talk about receiving chiropractic adjustments. While some chiropractors use quick, forceful thrusts with their hands in order to move the spine back into alignment (this is known as a “manual adjustment”), other chiropractors use an integrator tool instead.
The beauty of the integrator tool is that it is precisely calibrated to deliver the exact amount of force and pressure that the chiropractor programs it to for each patient. This means you can receive careful, consistent, and gentle spinal alignment care that can help with any chronic pain or stiffness you may be struggling with.
By having a chiropractor gently adjust your spinal column back to the alignment it was designed to be at, you can expect to suffer less from joint pain, especially pain that has become exacerbated by spinal arthritis. In addition, a careful spinal adjustment can improve your overall range of motion, which you may be struggling with thanks to your arthritis.
Apart from direct manipulations or adjustments, a chiropractor can also help you live with arthritis on a daily basis by teaching you exercises for your overall health and wellness.
For instance, a doctor of chiropractic can demonstrate specific forms of low-impact stretching and yoga, which can improve your joint and muscle flexibility and help you manage your chronic pain when you’re at home or are unable to get in for an adjustment.
Your chiropractor can also create an exercise program that will suit your individual needs, including relatively gentle forms of activity such as swimming and aerobic movements that won’t cause pain in your joints. Taken altogether, these rehabilitative exercises can set you up for greater autonomy amid your arthritis struggle.
While direct adjustments and therapeutic exercises are the primary form of care that a chiropractor can perform to treat the symptoms of arthritis, you may also benefit from chiropractic therapy in the form of chiropractic massage techniques.
Similar to a massage done either for general relaxation or for physical therapy purposes, a massage performed by a trained chiropractor involves the use of gentle pressure and repetitive motion to manipulate the body’s soft tissue. A chiropractor is likely to focus specifically on the tissue surrounding your spinal column and the other joints of your body.
While massage therapy done by a non-chiropractic professional focuses more on your muscles, a chiropractor places a greater emphasis on using a massage to treat your spinal alignment in a gentle, non-invasive way. This is especially helpful if you are suffering from osteoarthritis of the spine and need a way to find relief without direct contact in the troubled area.
Lifestyle and Dietary Advice
Like most medical professionals, chiropractors can do far more than just help you while you’re at their practice. They can also use their health and wellness knowledge to put you on a lifestyle path that will make accommodations for your arthritis.
For example, your chiropractor can provide lifestyle advice regarding diet and exercise for better weight management, which can have a positive effect on joint pain because lower weight puts less strain on your inflamed joints.
A chiropractic professional can also provide guidance on foods that help with active inflammation, suggest supplemental vitamins that can help with inflammatory conditions, and teach you helpful stress management techniques to reduce daily aches and help with your nerves.
Finally, a chiropractor can teach you proper posture and body mechanics, which can help you avoid injury and put less pressure on joints throughout your daily life. The health advice that a good chiropractor offers can work wonders for your long-term quality of life.
Contact Cornerstone Chiropractic Today to Schedule an Appointment
Whether you’re experiencing chronic joint pain or your arthritis has been leaving you with neck pain for days on end, you don’t need to be nervous about receiving gentle, non-invasive back pain treatments from Cornerstone Chiropractic.
Our neurological-based chiropractic care focuses on your overall wellness and is designed with your needs in mind. Give us a call or make an appointment online to start living pain-free!