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Alternative medicine: chiropractic

Alternative medicine: chiropractic

Back, shoulder- and neck troubles are incredibly obstructive. Maybe you’re not a big fan of regular medicine, perhaps you need some extra support, or it might be that you want to try something new; a chiropractor can help! 


Chiropractic care is focused on ensuring that the nervous system works properly. It’s often about removing blockages in the spine and joints and making them flexible again, restoring normal movement and curing pain.

When a joint is blocked, this creates irritation in the joint itself, but also in the surrounding nerves and muscles. And that in turn can radiate out to arms and legs, or cause headaches.

The history of this healing method

Chiropractic was founded by an American, Daniel David Palmer (1844-1913). He based his theory on an idea of the Greek philosopher Hippocrates, namely that the cause of an illness may be found in the spinal column. In Belgium, England, Switzerland and the Scandinavian countries, chiropractor is a recognized profession that is part of primary health care. In the Netherlands, practitioners of “alternative or complementary medicine” are not recognized.

The professional association stresses that chiropractic is a practice which complements traditional medicine; it does not claim to supplant it. As the Greek word cheir means ‘hand’ and prattein means ‘practice’, the chiropractor works with his hands.

The treatment

Treatment begins with a questionnaire with questions about your symptoms and your lifestyle. Most people come to a chiropractor with headaches, migraines, facial pain, period pains. Or back, shoulder and neck troubles. 

Then the cause of the complaint is investigated, sometimes involving neurological tests, making a temperature scan of the spinal column, or even taking X-rays.

The treatment itself consist of sharp, measured manipulation of the joint or the spine. It can involve massaging muscles or pressure points, or strengthening and stretching exercises. You’ll also get tips on stress control or posture, also at work. Chiropractors are often jokingly referred to as “bone crunchers” or “pop and pray”, and it’s true that you sometimes hear a popping sound when a joint is corrected. The joint surfaces are prised slightly apart, creating an air bubble in the joint that makes this sound.


This article is part of  ‘Alternative Medicine – Give your health a leg up’,  from Happi.body – Power

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