I may be going out on a limb here, but let me just stop you right there...
This is a question I get asked almost daily in my Chiropractic studio, usually after I've examined and adjusted someones hand, shoulder, foot, ankle or knee. In this little post I want to shed some light on some of the other things I do alongside spinal adjustments.
Chiropractors are commonly known as the doctors for your back - just like a dentist is a tooth doctor and a podiatrist is a foot doctor. Now, I think this is a pretty fair generalisation to make but I saddens me to think of all the people with extremity pain out there who don't know that chiropractic can help them.
Over the years I have had some pretty cool cases walk/limp into my office, a lot of which have been for things other than low back or neck pain. Sprained ankles, rotator cuff tears, tennis elbows, carpal tunnel syndrome, knee pain... The list could go on!
The amazing thing about chiropractic is that its expertise with the joints of the spine also translates to every other joint in the body - funny that! Assessing and treating a foot or shoulder is no different to assessing and treating the spine - if it's not moving - get it moving!
Simple right? Then, we can add in Graston Technique®, dry needling, dynamic tape and rehab exercises if we need to.
I will never forget one of my supervising clinicians back at university telling me, 'he who looks at the site of pain is lost', meaning the pain may be in the arm or hand BUT the cause of that pain may be elsewhere (the spine). Now, it is true that a majority of extremity conditions either arise from or are compounded by dysfunction of the spine, especially conditions like carpal tunnel syndrome, rotator cuff issues and knee pain. But it is always part of my examination to address the 'chain'; exactly like the old song goes, "the foot bone's connected to the leg bone..." this includes both the joints and the muscles.
Every chiropractor learns how to assess and treat extremity dysfunction in their five years at university, but I have been lucky enough to learn most of my advanced extremity techniques though the international federation of sports chiropractic (FICS), and other post grad courses and without these tools in my toolkit I hate to think of how many things I would miss day to day!
How cool is that - Now you know that chiropractic isn't just about 'cracking backs'! Chiropractic is about restoring human function by using safe, effective, manual, drug and surgery-free techniques.
So next time you see your Chiro, ask them, ' Hey Doc, can you have a look at my foot/hand//knee/shoulder/jaw.......'?
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