Each chiropractor learns many ways of making changes to the spine and other joints as well as muscles and tendons. The most well know adjustment for the spinal joints is called the chiropractic adjustment and it often yields a clicking or cracking sound from the joint adjusted. This is one of my favorites. When the patient is relaxed and trusts the chiropractor it is undoubtedly one of the most efficient ways to make lasting changes, which positively affect the patient’s health and diminish pain and other symptoms.
I have found, during my experiences as a chiropractor, that when I combine this technique with a number of others and also some muscle relaxation methods, the adjustment usually work better. The tissues near the joint are more relaxed and allow better manipulation.
For the muscles I use a combination of trigger point therapy, which is a bit like acupressure performed on the appropriate muscles, deep friction massage, cross friction massage and various passive and dynamic muscle stretching techniques.
I also have an instrument called an Activator, which I use in some circumstances. Like a conventional chiropractic adjustment, it delivers a fixed force at high speed in a particular direction. Like the skilled hands of a chiropractor, it is precise, and I use it for many different purposes. After my years of experience, I know the right moment and it has been a useful tool to help my patients.
My chiropractic bench has a feature called drop sections. These enable me to use a method called Thompson Drop, which I find very useful, especially on the pelvic joints.
There is also a toggle headpiece, which enables me to do toggle recoil technique. This method is reserved for when the first cervical vertebra is “out of line”.
In my room I have some wedged blocks. One of the courses I took after college taught us to realign the pelvis using these blocks and I find them great for patients with hyper-mobility in their pelvis joints. This condition is common after childbirth.
These are most of the techniques I use, but one of the most useful skills they taught us in chiropractic college was palpation. How to know by touch, what tissues are under the skin and in what condition they are. This skill continues to develop with each patient and it enables us to know where a problem is.
The testing of muscles is another way we can get your diagnosis correct and then give you the correct treatment plan. Apart from the conventional use of MRI scans, radiographs and CT scans, these manual methods of diagnosis are very reliable with a skilled and experienced chiropractor.