Common Chiropractic Techniques Explained

Do you feel like your body pain might never go away? If you answered yes, you’re not alone. The CDC estimates that 1 out of every 5 American adults suffers from chronic pain.

Before turning to Western medicine to help you feel better, consider visiting a chiropractor. The right chiropractic technique can be highly effective at relieving discomfort. Even better, chiropractor visits are non-surgical and there are no prescriptions required.

Chiropractic adjustment techniques vary. Only your chiropractor can determine the best chiropractic technique for you.

Before you schedule an appointment, you should know what to expect. Keep reading to learn about 7 common chiropractic techniques.

What Is a Chiropractor?

If you’ve never visited a chiropractor, you might be wondering what they do. Chiropractic professionals treat conditions related to your body’s structure. Chiropractors know how to manipulate your muscles, joints, bones, and connective tissue.

They use their hands and a variety of instruments to help you achieve proper alignment. Chiropractic adjustments are often used to treat back pain, neck pain, and headaches. Chiropractors can help car accident victims and individuals with sports injuries, among others.

In addition to making your body feel better, chiropractic adjustments can improve your mental health. They also support muscle strength and flexibility. After a visit to your chiropractor, you might feel happier and more energized.

Let’s take a look at some of the common techniques chiropractors use to help their patients thrive.

Common Chiropractic Techniques

It’s smart to know what to expect before your first visit to a chiropractor. If you take a few minutes to educate yourself, you’ll feel relaxed and ready for your treatment. Here are the top techniques you might encounter.

Gonstead Adjustment

The Gonstead adjustment is all about precision. It includes an in-depth analysis of your spine to identify the source of your discomfort. The five analysis techniques are:

  • X-ray
  • Visual observation
  • Use of a Nervoscope to detect spinal inflammation
  • Static palpation
  • Motion palpation

Your chiropractor will ask you to hold still and then move while they examine your spine and other areas of the body. The goal is to look for signs of distress.

Based on the problem, very specific adjustments are applied. Tables and chairs are often used to position the body for treatment.

Logan Basic Technique

The precise, low force Logan Basic Technique is a great option for infants, children, and elderly patients. It is also suitable for pregnant women.

This method focuses on the muscles around the pelvis and sacrum. First, your chiropractor will examine you both standing and laying down.

The treatment takes place on a table. The chiropractor will hold specific points while rubbing your back muscles to release pressure. The Logan Basic Technique is not only gentle, but it’s also effective.

Thompson Terminal Point Technique

The Thompson Terminal Point Technique is also known as the Thompson Drop-Table Technique. Each body segment is examined for problems, and the practitioner checks if one leg appears longer than the other. Leg length is an indicator of which adjustments are needed.

Next, the patient is placed on a precision adjusting table.

Different sections of the table are engineered to drop slightly when pressure is applied to the body. This enhances the treatment’s effectiveness while still supporting the spine.

Additionally, the table protects the patient from over adjustment. It also prevents the chiropractor from developing work-related injuries.

Flexion Distraction

Flexion distraction is a type of spinal mobilization that is performed on a segmented table. The table moves as the chiropractor works. The combination of manipulations and table movements decompresses the spine.

You can think of this chiropractic technique as a gentle push-pull. It widens the spinal canal area to increase intervertebral disc space. The extra space improves circulation and reduces pressure on the surrounding nerves.

This website provides a great explanation if you want to know more about flexion distraction.

Activator Method Technique

The Activator chiropractic technique is frequently used to address neck, back, and extremity complaints. This method requires a spring-loaded Activator adjusting instrument. Your chiropractor will use it to apply fast, low force, controlled adjustments.

The patient lays face down on a table, and the treatment begins near the lower back. The chiropractor slowly works up towards the neck.

The quick motion of the Activator ensures that the muscles do not tense up and resist the treatment. Delivering chiropractic adjustments to tense muscles is ineffective.

Diversified Technique

The Diversified chiropractic technique is also called the Diversified Full Spine Technique. It aims to restore proper alignment and movement of the spine. Like many other methods, gentle, high-velocity adjustments are used to correct problems.

Aligning the spine reduces interference with the central nervous system. It allows the brain and spinal cord to communicate with the body more efficiently. Patients who receive this treatment report better overall wellness and body performance.

Soft Tissue Therapy

Soft Tissue Therapy is the adjustment and rehabilitation of the muscles, ligaments, and tendons. Unlike chiropractic techniques that focus on the spine, this method is used to manipulate the tissues.

Chiropractors commonly use Soft Tissue Therapy to treat and prevent sports injuries. However, athletes are not the only people who can benefit from this technique.

Soft Tissue Therapy offers the following benefits for all patients:

  • Adjusts muscle tone
  • Improves circulation
  • Speeds the removal of metabolic waste
  • Corrects the level of nerve stimulation
  • Heals scar tissue
  • Enhances mental clarity

This technique is similar to massage therapy, but it is highly targeted and clinical.

Find Out Which Chiropractic Technique Is Right for You

Most chiropractors use a set of techniques they have perfected throughout their careers. Your practitioner will be able to identify the chiropractic technique that is best for you.

Trust your chiropractor, and follow their recommendations and instructions. Now that you know what to expect, you can arrive at your appointment worry-free. Your body will feel better in no time.

If you found this article about chiropractic techniques helpful, please check out some of the other great content on our site.