Millions of people seek chiropractic care along with massage therapy to relieve or prevent pain and limited mobility.
Chiropractic Care For Your Health
Chiropractic care is a patient-centred, non-invasive, hands-on, regulated health care profession focused on your spine, muscles, joints and nervous system.
Chiropractors use the best available evidence and clinical expertise to diagnose issues that affect your body’s movement. They treat them without medication or surgery and prevent them from returning. Chiropractic care can also promote health and improve your quality of life, as well as alleviate pain.
Doctors of chiropractic, called ‘chiropractors’ are spine, muscle, joint and nervous system experts. Every chiropractor receives at least six to seven years of post-secondary academic and clinical education. They are trained in how to evaluate, diagnose, recommend and deliver a treatment plan that manages issues within these systems, according to your preferences. A chiropractor’s education also includes courses in radiology, pain management, prescribed exercise and rehabilitation, among others.
Some chiropractors also pursue additional academic and practical education to specialize in other areas. These areas of specialization include clinical sciences and diagnostic imaging, pediatric, rehabilitation, spinal stenosis, sports sciences and animal chiropractic care.
Every chiropractor is uniquely qualified to evaluate your condition and identify what’s causing your pain.
Some of the conditions chiropractors treat include:
- Back pain
- Neck pain
- Pain associated with arthritis
- Work and sports injuries
While chiropractic care safely and effectively restores normal movement to spinal joints, massage helps decrease muscle tension. Click on the tabs below to find our more about how massage therapy can help you. Together, these two therapies can make for a dynamic duo that can help you to say, “Goodbye pain, hello freedom!”
The vital role of soft tissue
Joint problems are almost always accompanied by tension or injury in your soft tissue: muscles, tendons, ligaments and fascia (the elastic web of connective tissue that ties your body together). Tight, inflamed muscles and fascia suffer poor circulation and can develop glue-like adhesions which prevent muscles from lengthening completely. Painful trigger points can also develop, often referring pain or tingling to other areas in the body. In extreme cases, tight muscles can compress nerves, causing additional pain.
If you receive chiropractic without addressing related soft tissue problems, you may still experience pain and reduced mobility. In addition, tight muscles and shortened fascia can reverse the good effects of your adjustment.
Massage for healthy tissue
Massage therapists use a variety of techniques to address soft tissue problems. Gentle kneading and stretching lengthens contracted muscles and fascia. Techniques such as sustained pressure, ice massage and stretching can release trigger points. Sprains, strains and adhesions can be addressed directly with massage techniques that stimulate healthy separation and realignment of injured fibers. Massage also increases circulation which helps fascia and muscles begin to soften and lengthen, like a sponge absorbing water. Good circulation reduces painful swelling and inflammation, and promotes healing by removing waste products and bringing nutrients to your tissues.
Maintenance and care
Both massage and chiropractic offer preventive care to support your ongoing good health. A timely visit to your chiropractor can reestablish normal alignment and mobility before secondary soft tissue problems develop.
Regular massage can release chronically contracted muscles and fascia, improving the balance among muscle groups and promoting healthful circulation. Your body will be more resilient in the face of daily stresses, less prone to pain and injury.
In addition, massage triggers the body’s relaxation response, interrupting a cycle of stress and muscle tension that can build in response to life’s challenges. Feeling relaxed and rejuvenated after a massage, you are less likely to slip into patterns of tension that can contribute to joint and soft tissue problems.
Supporting your self care
Because chiropractic and massage help relieve pain and improved mobility, you may sleep better and feel more energetic. You may then find it easier to stretch and exercise. This can help you maintain and even improve the flexibility, strength and balance needed to prevent misalignment, tension and injury.
Massage is also a powerful tool for becoming aware of chronic tension or postural problems that affect your body mechanics. With this knowledge, you can take preventive measures on your own before pain develops.
Mutually supportive therapies
Adding massage therapy to your chiropractic care program can increase its effectiveness.
- Recovery is faster and more complete when you address multiple components of your condition.
- Chiropractic adjustment often proceeds more easily when circulation is improved and your body and mind are relaxed.
- Adjustments hold longer with less muscle tension.
- If you find that pain persists, recurs or even worsens after your massage, chiropractic could help.
- Chiropractic may give immediate relief as joints are restored to mobility.
- Soft tissue often heals quickly once it is no longer subjected to the stress of misaligned joints.
- Chiropractic adjustments can sometimes relax deep layers of soft tissue that can be difficult to reach with massage.
- Your chiropractor can use x-rays and state-of-the-art diagnostic techniques to evaluate other possible cause for your pain and make appropriate referrals if necessary.
Chiropractors and massage therapists generally agree that treatments should be scheduled close together. Consult your chiropractor for his or her preferred order.