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Chiropractic therapy is beneficial to those suffering from chronic back pain, neck pain, headaches and other illnesses of the musculoskeletal system.
But despite the testimonials of countless patients whose lives were made better by chiropractic treatment, the cloud of doubt still remains above chiropractic medicine.
Most people who question chiropractic are those whose first brush with the practice has been through videos that yes, are quite scary. But chiropractors beg to disagree. Undergoing a neck adjustment is completely safe, in fact it’s safer than other treatment options, and here we’ll tell you why.
There is always a risk attached to every medical procedure.
A study compared the risk of developing stroke after undergoing medical treatments (NSAIDs, narcotic medications, and spinal surgery for pain relief. Per 1 million people, NSAIDs (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) cause 153 stroke deaths, narcotic medications cause 53 deaths, and spinal surgery of the neck cause 500 stroke deaths.
On the other hand, neck manipulation is only associated with 1 death per 1 million people. When talking about malpractice insurance, compared to an anesthesiologist who pays $10,000 per year, a chiropractor pays only a little more than 1/10 of that amount at $1,500 a year.
A different study focused on the link between cervical manipulation and damage to the carotid artery which can cause stroke. Buried deep in to the neck, the carotid artery is a point of concern during a neck manipulation because of the belief that they can be stretched to the point of damage.
The conclusion was that the force applied during a manipulation is not greater compared to that of daily activities. This, together with the low incidence of risk related to neck manipulation is enough to rule out the common misconception that chiropractic neck adjustments are dangerous.
While the possibility of getting injured or suffering a stroke due to neck manipulations are statistically minute, there is still the possibility of experiencing side effects. But at the cost of mild dizziness which dissipates quickly is reduced pain and inflammation
Examining the mechanics of a neck manipulation, you will notice that it is a high velocity force applied at low amplitude performed by the hands of a professional whose 4 years of chiropractic school focused on perfecting this skill.
Chiropractors have a very precise knowledge of your spine, so when they say they’re going to “rotate your 6th vertebra 4 degrees to the right,” they can do just that. Unlike other medical doctors who undergo post-graduate training in spinal manipulation, chiropractors are the only health care specialist whose specialization is the spine.
They know their way around the musculoskeletal system and are very much aware of the interaction between the muscles, bones, joints and ligaments, especially the delicate touch that must be used when dealing with spinal nerves.
Facts can only give you so much assurance about the safety of neck adjustments because it’s up to you whether you believe them or not. But do note that at Corrective Chiropractic, we only apply neck adjustments when truly necessary.
It’s part of our beliefs that patients have a voice in the care they receive and educating them on the procedures so they know exactly how the procedures will benefit them. However, if you’re still in doubt about going through with a neck adjustment, our doctors will discuss your options and modify your treatment plan as needed.