Can Chiropractic Care Manage Arthritis?
Arthritis is most simply defined as cartilage damage of a joint, most often caused by disease or gradual wear over time. It can result in symptoms of pain, stiffness, and general joint dysfunction. Traditionally, management of arthritis includes the use of medications, injections, and even surgery. Thankfully, there are less invasive treatment options that you can seek out as well to boost your overall quality of life when dealing with arthritis. One of the best holistic options is chiropractic care- which we will discuss today.
How Chiropractic Treatment Can Help You Manage Arthritis
The two primary types of arthritis are Osteoarthritis (OA), caused by wear and tear, and Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA), caused by an autoimmune inflammatory disease. On occasion, a rapid onset of arthritis can occur, known as traumatic arthritis, secondary to a high impact injury such as with sports or a car accident. A chiropractor can help you effectively manage any of these types. They focus on restoring and maintaining optimal balance within the body, including the arthritic joints themselves and the spine. When the spine is optimally aligned and nerve energy is flowing freely, this translates to less innate strain on the joints throughout the body. Plus, it also reduces the risk of further tissue breakdown and enhances your ability to stay active in your own life.
It’s important to note that arthritis can’t be reserved or “cured,” no matter what type of treatment you choose. The goal is to manage your symptoms for preserving long term quality of life.
The Benefits of Arthritic Care from Your Chiropractor
Since arthritis isn’t curable, many people wonder why they should even seek care. However, there are many potential benefits to managing symptoms before they get more severe and it starts affecting your ability to participate in your favorite activities. Below are just a few of the top benefits of getting chiropractic care for your arthritic joint(s):
- Better joint range of motion
- Reduced pain
- Reduced swelling and inflammation
- Better nerve function to promote tissue health and potential healing
- Optimal biomechanics with daily movement, hobbies, an sports
- Being able to keep up with your favorite activities
- An overall boost in your sense of well-being
- Prevent unnecessary symptoms and progression
Treatment Options for Arthritis
All of the options your chiropractor might recommend after an initial in-depth assessment are based on holistic non-invasive treatments. Which options are best for you depends on your symptoms, lifestyle, and preferences. Additionally, if you are at a higher risk of arthritis due to genetics, weight, illness, or a previous injury it’s also a great idea to seek out care preventatively.
Let’s review some of the most common treatment options you might encounter at a chiropractic clinic:
- Chemical free pain management. Your chiropractor can provide you holistic pain management with less dependence on medication and fewer side effects. You will most likely try different modalities at the clinic and then transition to home options when you learn what works best for you. They might include electrical stimulation, traction, self-massage, heat, ice, and more.
- Joint adjustments. Chiropractic adjustments are often the cornerstone to holistic treatment to promote alignment of the spine and other affected joints. Even small misalignments can lead to major imbalances throughout the body that aggravate your symptoms. Adjustments will help you feel more balanced and ready to participate in your life fully.
- Exercise training. The way you move with daily activities (your biomechanics) plays a crucial role in your joint health. Once your body is better aligned with adjustments, your chiropractor can give you an exercise program that enhances your alignment and keeps it optimal with function based movements.
- Lifestyle recommendations. Managing your arthritis goes far beyond adjustments and exercise if you want to truly feel your best. Making the right daily choices for your health can help boost your energy and better cope with symptoms when they do arise. You can talk to your chiropractor about diet, weight loss, stress management, sleep habits, and more to maximize your health.
With any of the above treatment options, the ultimate goal is to recognize your body as an interconnected system. This allows you to achieve a more sustainable recovery with better symptom management because underlying issues aren’t being overlooked.
Keep an Upper Hand on Your Arthritis
Dealing with progressive symptoms or flare ups can leave you feeling frustrated. Taking a proactive approach to your arthritis care to minimize these issues can be life changing for your life and overall well-being. Addressing your arthritis holistically has so many benefits that reach far beyond just reducing pain, plus with significantly fewer risks and side effects. With all this in mind, it’s time to find a local chiropractor in your area to help you navigate arthritis.
The team at North Alabama Spine and Rehab understands the importance of full body balance to help your joints (and body) reach their full potential. If you live near Decatur or Huntsville, AL they can help you with all of your arthritis concerns. The first step is getting started by calling their clinic and scheduling an initial assessment. That way they can make specific recommendations that help you feel your absolute best both immediately and for years to come.