Many people consider visiting a chiropractor only after suffering years of unnecessary pain. However, focusing on prevention is key to long-term well-being. Just as you schedule regular dental cleaning to prevent tooth decay, it’s essential to arrange consistent chiropractic checkups to stave off spinal decay and related ailments.
Today’s savvy health-care consumers are enlightened about the benefits of preventive care and the dangers of painkillers and other medication. The health-care tide is turning as many individuals shift their attitude about health care from one of “damage control” to one centering on prevention.
A preventive chiropractic checkup typically includes a thorough spinal examination to detect areas in the spine where movement is restricted or spinal bones are slightly out of place. These dysfunctional spinal segments are called vertebral subluxations. We correct these areas with gentle and effective maneuvers called chiropractic adjustments. Because wellness visits are focused on prevention rather than pain relief, the doctor takes time to educate patients about factors influencing long-term disease prevention, with a holistic, whole person emphasis. The goal is to identify and remove any risk factors before they trigger disease.
Symptoms are NOT the “early warning signs” many individuals consider them to be. Symptoms like pain usually do not appear until late in a disease process, often when it is too late for the malady to be reversed. By maintaining a subluxation-free spine, preventive checkups correct the underlying trigger of conditions like back pain, headaches and TMJ. Scientific studies show that unrestricted joints have better range of motion, making them less likely to be depleted of joint fluid and cartilage. By keeping joints mobile, chiropractic helps prevent conditions like osteoarthritis before the advent of joint degeneration, and long before symptoms emerge. It’s especially important to ward off arthritis before pain appears, because the severity of degeneration to the spine is not necessarily associated with pain.
The frequency of preventive checkups depends on a host of factors. Only your doctor of chiropractic can determine the optimal frequency for your wellness care visits. It is never too early to start planning for preventive care.