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Can Chiropractic Care Help With Chronic Pain?

May 8, 2021

Chronic pain is defined as pain that lasts for more than three months. It is a broad term that encompasses pain caused by serious illness, such as cancer, as well as pain caused by musculoskeletal problems (which is, itself, very broad). Medical treatment for chronic pain can be relatively limited, with a focus on medications and potentially invasive surgery. Chiropractic care can often reduce the need for these interventions and help reduce chronic pain and improve quality of life noninvasively and conservatively.

Chronic pain can be caused by a variety of underlying conditions, which can make diagnosis quite difficult. Chiropractors are trained in diagnosis so are able to pinpoint the source of the chronic pain and develop an appropriate treatment plan to reduce it. This diagnostic procedure can include the running of tests such as x-rays and blood/urine tests, taking a detailed medical history, observations, and lifestyle background.

Chronic pain caused by musculoskeletal problems

This type of chronic pain can be the result of an injury, overuse of a muscle or joint, poor posture, or developmental differences. It can include lower back pain, knee pain, and hip pain. Common causes can be an initial injury, arthritis, or inflammation.

Chiropractic care is well-placed to help treat this type of chronic pain since chiropractors are experts in the musculoskeletal system and how to treat it. The treatment plan will usually include a variety of treatments, depending on the cause of the chronic pain and the needs of the patient. They can include:

* spinal adjustments
* spinal mobilization
* electronic modalities including ultrasound, laser therapy, and TENS
* traction
* stretching
* exercises
* heat and cold therapy
* lifestyle advice

Chronic pain caused by headaches

One of the most common types of chronic pain is headaches. These can stem from a variety of sources, including problems with the cervical spine, stress, and muscle strain or tightness. Migraines are a particular type of chronic headache for which a definitive cause hasn't yet been discovered. Chiropractic care can be an effective treatment for chronic headaches, including migraines.

Treatments can include:

* adjustments and mobilization of the cervical spine
* chiropractic massage
* stretching
* exercises
* lifestyle advice, including on how to manage migraine triggers

Chronic pain caused by fibromyalgia

Fibromyalgia is a chronic pain condition that has no known treatment. The cause of fibromyalgia has yet to be discovered, but it is thought that it is related to a dysfunction in the pain signal system. Chiropractic care can help patients with fibromyalgia to manage their condition, reducing their pain and increasing their quality of life.

Treatments can include:

* acupuncture
* nutritional advice, including supplements
* exercise
* massage therapy
* spinal adjustments and mobilizations
* sleep advice
* electronic modalities, such as ultrasound, laser therapy, and TENS
* heat and cold therapy

Chronic pain can be debilitating and can interfere with day-to-day life to a great extent. Chiropractic care can help to alleviate the symptoms of many chronic pain conditions and treat the causes of some of them, allowing patients to increase their ability to function and enjoy life. It can also help to reduce reliance on pain medications.

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