The profession of chiropractic is a health care profession that deals with the diagnosis and treatment of mechanical disorders of the musculoskeletal system, especially the spine. This includes subluxations which refer to an abnormal amount of motion in a joint (a problem for our purposes) and muscle/nerve dysfunction (what we are treating). Subluxation is defined as “the displacement or misalignment of two or more segments of the vertebral column (spine), such as occurs in hypermobility and spondylolisthesis” There are many types of subluxation, ranging from mild to severe.

Chiropractic focuses on improving the function through examination, diagnosis, treatment planning, patient education, and other health care services for the purpose of improving a person’s health.

To be licensed as a chiropractor (in most states), one must complete a minimum of 4 years of college and graduate from an accredited Doctorate of Chiropractic program, along with passing exams administered by state licensing boards.

In order to locate and identify subluxations, either X-ray or MRI imaging can be used , but ultrasound has proven much more useful in identifying subluxation patterns that may have been missed by these techniques alone.

Additional training is available through:
The Gonstead technique uses specific movement evaluation while adjusting. There is little chance of causing increased physiologic stress on the spine and joints; this technique is heavily reliant on palpation (feeling) to locate and adjust the joints, whereas many chiropractic techniques are less reliant on it.

Brain-based technique uses a spinal evaluation (using patient history, physical exam, clinical testing), then a thorough neurological examination, followed by an adjustment.
This focuses primarily on moving the head back into alignment with its axis to relieve pressure from the brain stem while also addressing dysfunctional muscles creating instability in the shoulder blades (which attaches via tendons to the base of the skull). This can be particularly effective when treating patients that have suffered whiplash or concussion injuries .

Inverse techniques utilize manual traction and decompression for aligning vertebrae at changes in direction; they do not use a manipulation (cracking) of the joints. They are used for pain and discomfort relief when other treatment techniques have been unsuccessful, or before attempting them in order to identify why they are unsuccessful. (

The integrative technique incorporates chiropractic manipulation with other health modalities including muscle energy technique , therapeutic exercise, massage therapy, nutrition counseling/counseling, homeopathic remedies, craniosacral therapy , and others; this is often a good choice for individuals with musculoskeletal issues that cannot be effectively treated by traditional chiropractic methods alone. (

NSAIDs such as Ibuprofen can help manage some of the effects from pain due to subluxation if used correctly — with caution–in order to avoid gastrointestinal problems, ulceration, bleeding from stomach or intestine (takes up to 10 weeks to heal), liver damage. Also caused a 46% increased risk of heart attack or stroke in non-rheumatoid arthritis patients; the most significant increase was seen in people younger than age 65 years, those with an ulcer and/or smoking history; dose above 1200 mg per day is not recommended. (

In addition NSAIDs can make headaches worse by increasing fluid that compresses your brainstem — this especially occurs when taking aspirin for headaches.