What is a chiropractic adjustment?
A chiropractic adjustment involves using hands or a small instrument to apply a controlled, quick, force into a spinal or extra-spinal joint. If a chiropractic adjustment is performed on a spinal joint, it may be termed spinal manipulation.
Their may or may not be a ”popping” sound heard, much like the sound of cracking ones knuckles. The presence of this sound does not determine success of treatment. The same benefits of an adjustment occur regardless of a sound present.
What is the ”popping” sound during spinal manipulation?
The popping sound heard during an adjustment is simply tiny bubbles forming within the joint. The human spine is made of many synovial joints. A synovial joint is one of the multiple types of joints found in the body. Synovial joints have fluid in them. When the joint is moved with a quick impulse, tiny bubbles form within the synovial joints. These bubbles are what create the popping sound.
Are chiropractic adjustments painful?
In general, joint manipulation is not painful. It is important to have a professional perform the adjustments since red flags and contra-indications need to be ruled out. If the joint is extra stiff, there may be some mild soreness or irritation right before or after the adjustment. There should be no moderate-severe pain during an adjustment.
Spinal and Extra-Spinal Joint Manipulation Benefits
The goal of this treatment is to restore motion into joints that may not be moving well. Other benefits of a chiropractic adjustment include improved range of motion, decrease in pain, and improved joint function.
How to have chiropractic treatment last
Most benefits that are associated with a chiropractic adjustment last 2-5 days. For long-term benefits additional services should be provided. One of the main additional treatments we use at Chiros in Motion is therapeutic exercise. These exercises provide further joint stability to help adjustments last.
After you receive chiropractic care it is recommended to drink water and avoid sitting on soft surfaces such as a couch or cushioned seats. Doing these two things will decrease soreness from an adjustment later in the day.
Chiropractic side effects
The most common side effect is soreness and discomfort. Most side effects disappear a day or two after treatment. Here is a prospective study discussing the common and uncommon side effects of chiropractic manipulations.