Doctors of chiropractic are educated and trained in the detection and care of musculoskeletal problems, particularly the joints of the spinal column. However maintaining the health and integrity of all the joints in the body are important since each structure is related to one another along a delicate biomechanical chain. Aberrant movement even from a small joint in the foot can offset other structures in the body. Everything is connected, and nothing is isolated. Most spinal injuries either micro-damage (small repetitive movements over time) or macro-damage (trauma) can insult the discs, cartilage, tendons, muscles and ligaments that hold the bones of the spine together. When soft tissue injuries occur, the movement of the spinal joints is changed. This change, or dysfunction, may cause some joints to move too little and others to move too much.
Pain is not always obvious when spinal injuries occur. Many times the pain that comes after a minor injury goes away by itself in a few days. The injury, however, often causes the spinal joint dysfunction that remains long after the pain goes away. Most people think everything is all right if there is no pain. A person with spinal dysfunction usually doesn’t know there’s a problem unless something happens again to cause swelling in the weakened area.
The spine works as one long chain with many moving links. Every change in movement in one joint of the spine will affect another. Therefore, pain that comes from the spine in one area may actually be related to silent problems elsewhere. Many people that seek care for spinal problems have specific complaints of pain or other symptoms. Your chiropractor will likely examine and x-ray your full spine to give you the proper care (usually a specific adjustment) and manage your condition completely.