Subluxations are misalignments in the vertebrae and, in chiropractic, are believed to be the cause of many different health problems. Even for those who have healthy posture and lifestyle habits, a subluxation may still occur, and they can create quite an impact on our body’s system.
The entire spinal cord plays a huge role in how your body controls automatic functions and the vital link between your brain and body. When a subluxation occurs, messages can become disrupted and your body may become weak against fighting illnesses and stunt its healing process. Because the body can begin to change right away after a subluxation, it is usually best to see a subluxation chiropractor to correct it before your system starts to weaken or to stop the changes you might have already noticed from worsening over time.
How Does a Subluxation Happen?
There are three main causes of subluxations: Physical, chemical, and mental or emotional stress. These causes are also known as the “Three T’s” (trauma, toxins, and thoughts).
The most well-known type of subluxation and the most noticeable one is a physical subluxation. Very often, patients see a subluxation chiropractor because they feel they have a physical subluxation: the patient might have fallen, experienced whiplash, or was injured during sports. Usually if an activity involves one side of the body more than the other, it can cause an imbalance and lead to a subluxation.
Sometimes, a subluxation chiropractor can see patients who have suffered from a physical subluxation without the patient even knowing. This is because simple every day tasks can lead to physical subluxations: waitresses who carry heavy trays with only one hand, individuals who carry heavy backpacks, purses or luggage, golfers who swing a club in one direction, parents who carry their children on the side of their hip or pick them up without bending their legs, and even frequently tilting the head to one side while using the phone. These habits may put constant trauma on the body that can lead up to a subluxation.
Chemical subluxations come from toxins inside of the body that develop a chemical imbalance. Our bodies can handle various amounts of natural chemicals, but others may upset the body’s natural chemistry. Caffeine, processed foods, food allergies, pollution, alcohol, and smoking may all interfere with the body’s chemistry balance; these chemicals can irritate the nervous system and cause the muscle fibers to function abnormally and upset the muscle tone.
Not getting enough needed chemicals may also cause the chemical subluxation. The spinal bones of our body are dependent on the tone of muscles surrounding them and if the muscles are not healthy enough to support the alignment of the spine, it may cause the spine to shift. For example, say a patient has a calcium deficiency - this deficiency can affect your muscle health and may cause the muscles surrounding the spinal cord to become weak and lose their ability to support it.
This may surprise those who may not have heard of a subluxation caused by an emotional or mental force, but emotional subluxations are the most common causes of subluxations. Emotional and mental factors can cause great stress on the body; this stress can last a long time and make your body feel tired. When someone is going through a very emotional situation it can cause muscle tension and the muscle tension is what may cause a vertebra to subluxate.
If you think back, you might remember a time where you had an emotional experience that created fear, anger, or worry. During that time, there is a chance you could remember feeling muscles in the back of your neck or across your shoulders tighten. Undergoing extreme emotional and mental stress can cause your body to put stress upon itself and if this has happened numerous times it can greatly affect the position of your spine.
Combination of Physical, Chemical, and Emotional
While physical, chemical, and emotional forces may cause subluxations to happen all on their own it is common for patients to have a subluxation caused by a combination of them. Everyday stress can lead to trauma on our bodies and subluxations can occur regularly, as soon as birth. The purpose of a subluxation chiropractor is to correct subluxations a patient has developed so their body can maintain its health and repair itself before it causes permanent damage.
What Kind of Damage Can a Subluxation Lead to?
A subluxation chiropractor knows the importance of correcting a subluxation. Very often, a subluxation chiropractor can tell when patients have suffered a subluxation for far too long. If subluxations are not treated by a subluxation chiropractor, they can lead to many negative changes throughout the body. Depending on how long a patient has had a subluxation they may need more adjustments until the body is strong enough to keep its position naturally and repair the damage.
When you have a subluxation the communication between your brain and body becomes disrupted. This disruption causes the body to become confused and disable its ability to repair and heal itself from injury and sickness. Because of the subluxation being along the nervous system, you will experience negative changes or limitations in sensation, circulation, movement, respiration, digestion, cognition, reproduction, and emotions.
Just like exercising and eating well, spine health is essential to making sure your body can take in the nutrients it needs and keep a healthy nervous system. Your nervous system receives information about your skin, muscles, and joints of the body and carries the nerves in charge of controlling your movements. Information carried from the brain to the body helps in how you react, remember, and think. Without any instruction being carried from the brain to your body, the body will not be able to function and a subluxation that distorts these messages can cause the body great harm in various places.
What Does a Subluxation Chiropractor do?
The upper cervical area of our spine is the most delicate and significant part. Not only does the upper cervical area protect your brain stem (where all nerves and the communication pathway originate), if there is a subluxation here the rest of the spine will follow the subluxation. This is because when one of the top two bones of your spine become misaligned it will cause the head to tilt. When the head is tilted, the rest of the spine will begin to shift, twist, and turn to make your head level again. When the upper cervical area is corrected by a subluxation chiropractor and back to where it should be, the rest of the spine will realign itself to support it.
A subluxation chiropractor’s goal is to ensure your spine stays aligned and without interference of subluxations so your body can stay healthy and function normally. Patients have reported feeling significant changes throughout their bodies as soon as the first adjustment. As soon as a subluxation chiropractor fixes a subluxation the body immediately begins to repair and heal as best as it can. For those with a severe subluxation, it may require the body more time to repair and heal from it; however, positive changes will still occur along its way to recovery.