The Best Care at Westcoast Spine Center
What Is Spinal Adjustment or Manipulation?
In basic terms, it is the process in which the chiropractic physician skillfully applies controlled force into one or more "subluxated" vertebrae of the spine. The adjustment is also frequently used in the pelvic region to normalize the sacroiliac joints. The manipulative procedures are usually delivered using the hands.
What is "Subluxated?"
Vertebrae which lose their normal position or proper motion are commonly termed vertebral subluxations.
What Do Spinal Adjustments Do?
Adjusting helps correct vertebral subluxations. Correcting subluxations reduces pain and inflammation, reduces muscle spasm and tension, normalizes spinal biomechanics and more importantly, can remove nerve irritation and interference which can improve overall health and wellness of the individual. Chiropractic adjustments are the only way to eliminate vertebral subluxations and only the chiropractor is trained to detect subluxations and deliver the chiropractic spinal manipulation to correct subluxations.
When Should a Spinal Adjustment or Manipulation be Given?
Spinal manipulation are applied to certain vertebrae of the spine which are no longer in their proper position or where functioning has become impaired.
How does the Physician know I have a vertebral subluxation?
At Westcoast Spine Center, Dr. Craig Barcomb goes beyond what many chiropractors consider a spinal assessment by conducting a thorough analysis of your spine using five criteria to detect the presence of the vertebral subluxation complex.
Visualization - a way to cross reference all the other findings. Dr. Barcomb is an expert in looking for subtle changes in your posture and movement which could indicate any problems.
Instrumentation - The instrument of choice in the Gonstead System is the Nervoscope. The Nervoscope detects uneven distributions of heat along the spine which can be indicative of inflammation and nerve pressure. This instrument is guided down the length of your back and feels like two fingers gliding down each side of your spine.
Static Palpation - This is simply the process of feeling (or palpating) your spine in a stationary (or static) position. Your chiropractor will feel for the presence of swelling (or edema), tenderness and any abnormal texture or tightness in the muscles and other tissues of your back.
Motion Palpation - This process involves feeling the spine while moving and bending it at various angles. This enables the chiropractor to determine how easily or difficult each segment in your spine moves in different directions.
X-Ray Analysis - X-ray films enable your doctor to visualize the entire structure of your spine. This is helpful in evaluating posture, joint and disc integrity, vertebral misalignments and ruling out any pathologies, or recent fractures that may be present or contributing to the patient’s condition. These full-spine radiographs are taken in the standing, weight-bearing position to fully substantiate the examination findings.
If subluxations are found, immediate correction is generally indicated. Since subluxations are not always painful during the initial stages, even those who are not experiencing back or neck discomfort should receive periodic spinal checkups.
The Non-Spinal manipulation
In addition to manipulating the spine and pelvis, almost every other joint of the body can be manipulated by Dr Barcomb. This includes the joints of the hands and feet, wrists and ankles, elbows and knees, shoulders and hips, ribs and the jaw.
Like the joints of the spine, joints in the extremities can also become misaligned and fixated. Westcoast Spine Center techniques can restore and enhance extremity joint functioning which can increase the life of the joint and keep wear and tear to a minimum. This is a valuable tool to athletes who generally demand optimal joint performance from over use and highly stressed joints. Adjusting provides an immediate increase in joint range of motion and also supplies the joint with nutrients, as motion is the only way to bring nutrients into the joint cartilage and flush wastes products out.
Did your mother ever warn you that "cracking" your knuckles would give you arthritis? She was wrong! Research has shown that individuals who habitually "crack" their knuckles over their lifetime actually lower the incidence of arthritis in their knuckles compared with those who do not. Who Knew? Researchers believe the knuckle "cracking" increases joint nutrition and maintains joint motion, both of which are essential for a healthy joint.