Though chiropractic is a highly effective methodology for relieving pain, that is not its sole purpose. Chiropractic is also involved in restoring the body’s systems back to a state wherein it doesn’t experience pain and can, when crises arise, foster its own healing.
Chiropractic rehabilitative care is a means for enhancing the body’s own innate healing processes and restraining long-term degeneration of the posture and musculoskeletal frame, thereby assisting the body in its efforts to provide itself the ongoing healing it needs.
As distinct from the pain-relief model of chiropractic care, chiropractic rehabilitative care involves the restoration of proper functioning of the motor system. As such, it is also at the forefront of modern preventive care.
It could be said that chiropractic care for chronic and acute conditions primarily provides short-term relief whereas chiropractic rehabilitative care provides long-term healing. From there, a patient would then move on to preventive care, promoting ongoing health and wellness.
Rehabilitative care is often initiated after the initial symptoms of pain, tension, soreness, or discomfort are reduced. It is the next part of a patient’s healing process – the part where they and their chiropractor work together to maintain the healing that’s just occurred and the state of health and wellness that’s just been restored.
The frequency of office visits are typically reduced, though each visit is no less vital to maintaining that desired level of optimal health and wellness than when the acute problem was still being treated directly.
If, following chiropractic treatment for an injury, accident, or acute condition, such a program of chiropractic rehabilitative care isn’t undertaken, it is possible (even likely, in some circumstances) for the condition predicating the initial chiropractic visit to return – what the patient would experience as suffering a relapse. Likewise, if a program of chiropractic rehabilitative care is abruptly discontinued, so can the temporarily alleviated condition return, and even worsen. In both of these scenarios, the recovery time is invariably stretched out, causing deep healing and long-term relief to take much longer than necessary.
Far more than merely the prescribing of a take-home regimen of nutrition, fitness, and lifestyle changes (though certainly inclusive of all of it), rehabilitative chiropractic care is a much more involved process. It begins with an assessment of muscle imbalances, conducted anew at each subsequent visit, and proceeds from there with a custom-tailored program of assisted and self-care techniques that incorporate treatments addressing both muscle and joint dysfunction. Its overall goal – optimizing the entire neuromuscular system.
To reiterate, rehabilitative chiropractic care is a dual program comprised of chiropractic adjustments complemented by one or more practices of self-managed personal care. Other treatment modalities such as massage therapy and physiotherapy may be recommended.
During the rehabilitative stage of chiropractic care, the chiropractor closely monitors the patient’s progress and makes appropriate suggestions along the way for how to improve and maintain the results obtained.
It is this stage of one’s chiropractic program – rehabilitative chiropractic care – that integrates the benefits received in the chiropractor’s office with a patient’s everyday life.