Spinal Manipulation Demystified: An NCCIH Overview
Are you curious about spinal manipulation and its potential benefits? The National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH) has provided a comprehensive review of this intriguing technique, giving insights into its usage, conditions it can help with, safety concerns, and research in the field. In this blog post, we'll summarize the key points from the NCCIH's article and offer some tips on selecting a chiropractor and discussing complementary health approaches with healthcare providers.
Spinal manipulation involves applying a controlled thrust to a joint in the spine, moving it beyond its natural range of motion. It's primarily used by chiropractors but is also practiced by osteopathic physicians and physical therapists. Interestingly, there has been a slight increase in the percentage of U.S. adults who received chiropractic care (which usually involves spinal manipulation) from 2012 to 2017.
Common conditions treated with spinal manipulation include low-back pain, neck pain, headache, and sciatica. But is it safe? According to a 2017 review cited by the NCCIH, mild-to-moderate side effects like increased pain, discomfort, stiffness, or headache are common but usually resolve within 24 hours. Serious side effects are rare, but those with underlying health problems may be at greater risk.
The NCCIH is also funding research to investigate the mechanisms behind nondrug treatments like mindfulness training and spinal manipulation, as well as their effectiveness in managing pain. This research aims to determine the best approaches for minimizing the likelihood that low-back pain persists for extended periods.
If you're considering spinal manipulation, it's essential to select a qualified chiropractor. Ask about their education, licensure, specialized training, and experience. Make sure to discuss your health history, medications, and any concerns you have with the practitioner. Open communication with your healthcare providers about complementary health approaches is key to making well-informed decisions and taking charge of your health.
In conclusion, spinal manipulation is a fascinating technique with potential benefits for various conditions. By staying informed and communicating with healthcare providers, you can explore the world of complementary health approaches safely and effectively.
Photo by Joyce McCown