Your ability to adapt has been tested over and over in the past year. We’ve all learned that those who can adapt (in work, school, families, exercise, sports, clubs, etc.) WIN! Our ability to respond to changes effectively is what counts.
While these external tests and changes seem to have been accentuated over the last year, this is going on in our bodies CONSTANTLY! The body can adapt to its chemical, physical and mental environment. Because the external and internal environments are always changing, your body has to respond to maintain a stable physiological state. Your body’s ability to do this well is what causes you to be healthy. The better you can adapt, the healthier you are.
The good news for those of you under chiropractic care is that chiropractic helps the body adapt to both internal and external environments by taking pressure off of the nervous system. The nervous system is called the “master controller” system. It allows the brain to coordinate and communicate with every organ, tissue, and cell in your body. A healthy body and nervous system will respond to stressors and efficiently return to homeostasis. Chiropractic allows the nervous system to work better by decreasing interference in the pathway between brain and body. The example I often give to athletes is that if your muscle is about to tear, the golgi tendon organ that sits on your muscle has to deliver a message up to the brain to tell it that the muscle is about to tear. The brain will then send a message back down to the muscle to tell it to relax so that it does not get injured. An open communication pathway will relay the messages easier and decrease the chances of injury.
The goal and intent of chiropractic care is to achieve and maintain optimal nervous system function. Chiropractic puts you in a balanced state that increases the body’s ability to adapt, so the result of chiropractic care is the improved ability to adapt to the ever changing environment.
Our bodies have an amazing healing and adapting intelligence that we were each born with. Chiropractic care offers a way to unlock much of that innate potential! This innate intelligence is like a super power that enables our bodies to heal when we are injured and to adapt when environmental circumstances require it to do so. Our bodies know what they are doing –we just have to stay out of its way. In the modern world, however, this isn’t so easy. It is much easier to eat an inflammatory diet, live a sedentary lifestyle, constantly stare at electronic devices throughout the day, and lose touch with our sense of community. All of these endeavors, however, can be detrimental to our health. These days, we must actively work to stay plugged into our innate intelligence to stay our absolute healthiest.
This is why Chiropractic care is essential for most people and can help improve our health. It works without the risks associated with drugs or surgeries by utilizing the body’s own ability to heal itself. Chiropractors focus on the nervous system (brain, spinal cord, nerves) to restore optimal health by working to align the vertebral joints in the spine.
A chiropractor usually uses his/her hands or an instrument to identify any misalignments in the spine and realign those joints. Chiropractic care can reduce inflammation in muscles and in the nervous system, and can increase range of motion throughout the body. This improved movement not only feels great, but, more importantly, enables optimal function through better nervous system communication.
Most people start Chiropractic care when they need pain relief, whether from a chronic condition or from a recent injury such as an auto accident.. Popping an over the counter pain medication can provide temporary relief in some cases. Many people, however, are tired of using pills to mask symptoms and would rather get to the root cause of their pain. Chiropractic care addresses the root cause of pain and can obviate the need to take pain pills.
When the spine is in alignment, we have better communication from the brain to the body and vice versa. This improved communication between brain and body enables us to function, move, and feel better, so that we can live our healthiest lives.
When working to keep your spine healthy, we want to address the discs, or the cushion between each vertebrae. Sometimes the disc can bulge from too much pressure or even spill out in which case it is considered a herniated disc.
A herniated disc may also be referred to as a slipped disc or a ruptured disc. This can be caused by wear and tear or an injury.
An MRI can confirm a herniated disc. However, many people will recognize the symptoms of back pain or shooting pain, but symptoms can vary from person to person. Regardless, it is always better to be proactive when it comes to your health. The spine is degenerative in nature, so taking action as early as possible is wise.
Collagen is required to repair and restore damaged soft tissues such as the disc and surrounding ligaments. You can find collagen in bone broth which is very easy to make and inexpensive! Throw some bones in a slow cooker. Add water and a Tablespoon of apple cider vinegar. Keep in on low for 24 hours and you’re good to go. It’s easy and freezable! You could also use supplemental form. I use one from Great Lakes Gelatin Co. that’s hot or cold liquid soluble. For a herniated disc, two to three servings a day are typically recommended.
Foods rich with antioxidants are also recommended for herniated discs. Examples of these foods are blueberries, blackberries, and artichokes. Anti-inflammatory foods and/or supplements also will speed the healing process for herniated discs. Examples of these include turmeric, omega-3 fish oil, and an overall whole-food diet.
Exercise and Movement
With a herniated disc, it is critical that posture is addressed. Herniated discs can stem from a loss of normal curvature in the spine. For example, a forward head posture can lead to loss of the normal curve and make you prone to a herniated disc in the neck. Specific exercises can be prescribed for the area of the spine in trouble. At Relief Plus Chiropractic, we can also work to incorporate traction to the spine along with therapies to help hydrate the discs.
Get Corrective Chiropractic Care
Of course corrective chiropractic care can be highly beneficial to a herniated disc. Corrective care, or a series of adjustments to help retrain the spine and its movement can help get the pressure off of the disc and facilitate healing.
A herniated disc may touch neighboring nerves which can cause pain and symptoms. A chiropractic adjustment will help allow the nerves to transmit without interference.