The purpose of chiropractic care is not the treatment of conditions or disease; rather, it is the restoration of normal body function. As chiropractors, we work with the nervous system via gentle spinal adjustments. We reduce stress related interference to the nervous system, thereby enhancing overall body function. All the systems of the body — circulatory, digestive, eliminatory, hormonal, glandular, immunological, muscular, reproductive, respiratory, and skeletal — depend on the optimal function of the nervous system.
Our conventional healthcare system is mechanistic in that it views the body broken down into its distinct mechanical parts and there’s a specialist responsible for caring for each individual system. A healing model based on vitalism, however, believes that the body is a dynamic, ever-changing organism, continuously changing and adapting to its needs and desires. Vitalism also assumes that there is an intelligence and order within the organism that is designed to heal the body, and every system in the body coordinates functions with each other system.
Chiropractic is designed on the concept of vitalism. It is believed that the body has an Innate Intelligence to healing, and dis-ease occurs when the body’s natural ability to adapt to life’s forces (stress, environmental toxins, traumatic events) is interrupted. The thing that disrupts this communication pathway is called a subluxation, which interferes with the normal function of the nervous system. By removing subluxations through a very safe, specific, and controlled force applied to a joint, the interference is removed and the body’s nervous system is able to function fully and properly. In essence, with chiropractic, true healing is coming from within the body rather than from the chiropractor’s adjustment. Overall, conventional medicine is based on an outside-in approach where healing comes from something being added to the body, such as medicine or surgery, while chiropractic is based on an inside-out approach where healing occurs when the body’s own healing powers are activated.
I absolutely believe that everyone should be under chiropractic care. Regardless of the choices you make, the chiropractic approach will improve your inherent ability to function. Doesn’t it make sense to have your body functioning at an optimal level for healing no matter how (or if) you choose to treat various symptoms?
Yes! In fact, that is what I specialize in. Research shows that prenatal chiropractic care contributes to a more straightforward labor with less pain and trauma for mother and child. It can improve the balance and alignment of the spine and pelvis and can provide a more comfortable pregnancy and delivery for mother and baby. By restoring balance to the nervous system through gentle + specific nervous system focused chiropractic adjustments, optimal function to the reproductive organs is restored thus supporting the needs of your baby throughout pregnancy.
I am certified in Webster Technique from International Chiropractic Pediatric Association (ICPA) and I firmly believe that if you’re under chiropractic care during pregnancy, your chiropractor should be certified in this technique. Of the 227 credit hours it takes to become a Doctor of Chiropractic, we take 4 credit hours (one class) on OBGYN and pediatrics. That’s it. That is not sufficient to be able to serve a pregnant woman with specific chiropractic care and a thorough understanding of how her body is changing every single day.
You can check if your chiropractor is certified in Webster Technique here. Using this database, you can change the search criteria to be specific to chiropractors certified in Webster Technique only.
Birth is tough work for both mothers and babies. There are a lot of pressures and forces being exerted onto your baby during their journey into the world. A recent study by Viola Frymann demonstrated that 90% of newborns suffered the effects of birth trauma: associated strain through the neck and cranial areas following birth. Frymann, an American osteopathic doctor, studied more than 1,500 babies periodically across an 8 year period. She examined all babies within the first 5 days of birth; in fact, many were checked within the first 24 hours.
The study revealed that 10% of the newborn babies had perfectly, freely mobile skulls or cranial mechanisms. 10% had severe trauma to the head, evident even to untrained observers. The remaining 80% all had some strain patterns in the cranial mechanisms.
Birth in its many different forms can be quite traumatic. While each birth is unique, there is always a chance that the baby suffers some sort of strain due to a variety of reasons. Even the most natural births can result in trauma that goes undetected. As researcher G. Gutmann has written, “The trauma from the birth process remains an under-publicized and therefore significantly under-treated problem.”
Here is a list of some things that can cause birth trauma in infants:
Very short labor
Very long labor
The use of Pitocin to strengthen / induce uterine contractions
Restricted maternal birthing positions
Pulling or twisting on the head to deliver the infant’s body
The use of forceps or vacuum extraction
Left uncorrected, this trauma continues to impact a baby’s spinal growth and development, reducing the healthy function of the nervous system. 65% of neurological development (development of the brain and nervous system) occurs in the child’s first year so it’s imperative to ensure that your baby has every opportunity to maximize their nerve function during this critical period in their development.
This can cause many health challenges later in life that could easily have been prevented. Nursing difficulties, sleep disturbances, and an inability to be soothed and settled are all potential signs of spinal nerve stress in infants.
Although all infants should be checked right after birth, here are just 3 clear indicators to bring your baby to a pediatric chiropractor:
Their head tilts to one side, even after you straighten it
They seem to have difficulty turning their neck to one side
They have difficulty settling down or sleeping soundly
When bringing your infant or child to a chiropractor, I firmly believe your chiropractor should have attended seminars offered through the ICPA. Again, of the 227 credit hours it takes to become a Doctor of Chiropractic, we take 4 credit hours (one class) on OBGYN and pediatrics. That’s it. That is not sufficient to be able to serve an infant or child with specific chiropractic care and a thorough understanding of how their bodies and neurology are developing every single day. They are not simply miniature adults.
You can check here to see if your chiropractor is listed on the ICPA database. Please note: In order for a chiropractor to be listed on this database, they only have to pay an annual membership fee. It is up to you to dive into their website and ask the appropriate questions to gain an understanding of their level of proficiency in pediatric chiropractic care. For example, if you look at the website where I practice, it is obvious that we specialize in pediatrics.
The National Wellness Foundation is another great resource when finding a pediatric chiropractor. Please note: The chiropractors listed on this database are all part of a practice management group called Epic. You will not find me listed in this database because I am not part of this — or any — practice management groups and I plan on keeping it that way.
This is a common question and rightfully so. Summarized, I do not take insurance because I do not want insurance telling me what I can and cannot do for my practice members. In general, insurance companies are not focused on any preventative or wellness services. They were designed for quick, short-term symptom and disease care and treatment which is heavily invested in the conventional model of health care that too often relies on drugs and surgery. As Chris Kresser says, “Insurance-based medicine is not evidence-based medicine.” Realize that what our culture calls health care is actually “sick” care, since it has little to do with advancing true health. It’s mostly about suppressing symptoms while ignoring the underlying cause. I am committed to a vitalistic model that addresses the underlying causes of your symptoms with gentle + specific, nervous system focused chiropractic adjustments.
Now, if you have a policy it will probably help with at least some of the expense of your sick care. But few policies pay for things that help us keep our health.
Most insurance does not cover chiropractic care for children. I am not willing to exclude the segment of the population that chiropractic care can benefit and impact the most. It is, and always will be, easier and less expensive to grow healthy children than to repair damaged adults.
The great news is that by not having to deal with insurance companies, office costs are kept down, so I can offer affordable chiropractic care for the whole family. My prices are usually cheaper than a co-pay, but if you have chiropractic coverage, I will gladly provide you with the necessary documentation to get reimbursed if you’re willing to file yourself. I accept HSA and FSA forms of payment in my office and always welcome open and honest conversations about finances. I am here to serve you and will do all that I can to help.
The #1 thing you should look for in a chiropractor is someone who talks about your nervous system. If you go to your chiropractor just for pain relief, it’s like robbing a bank and only stealing the pens. Pain is the last sign of dysfunction so there is a lot more happening within your body before you physically feel it. A side effect of removing interference to your body’s nervous system — which allows your body to heal itself — is that your pain goes away. Chiropractic is not about back pain or neck pain because it’s so much more than pain relief, but we’re also really good at getting you out of pain in a model that isn’t symptoms and bandaids.
Chiropractic care is the foundation for true healing because it unleashes your body’s innate ability to heal itself. Other therapies such as acupuncture, massage, nutrition, etc. are incredibly healing and I love referring to other practitioners in the area who offer those services that work synergistically with chiropractic care because we begin to see not just an increase in that person’s ability to adapt to their environment, but also how their environment evolves and better supports their overall lifestyle.
Click here for a list of trusted providers that I trust, refer to often, and are currently or have previously been under care with and know personally.
*You still need to do your homework by digging through their website, giving them a call, or even scheduling a visit to make sure they are vitalistic and will assess your nervous system. Also, make sure your personalities mesh and you can trust them! That’s important too!
Chiropractic techniques fit into 3 basic models based on the three body systems primarily addressed by chiropractors: the skeletal system, the muscular system, and the nervous system. Therefore, while all chiropractic techniques involve all three systems, the techniques themselves can be differentiated from one another based on their method of assessment and their method of correction.
Segmental or skeletal system centered chiropractic techniques adjust vertebrae that are not in their optimum position back to a more normal position and, in so doing, affect the skeletal system first and then the muscular system next.
Postural or muscular system centered chiropractic techniques first involve putting tension or relaxation within the muscular system in order to allow an easier structural adjustment to take place. In so doing, this approach involves the muscular system first which then affects the skeletal system and then, finally, the nervous system.
Tonal or nervous system centered chiropractic techniques are not muscle or bone based but rather focus on the nervous system and the related changes in a person’s physiology. As such, tonal chiropractic techniques look at the nervous system first and the doctor’s input into the nervous system then affects the muscular system which, in turn, affects the skeletal and muscular systems.
Since all three technique models work and produce good results, why would we prefer a tonal approach? The answer comes in understanding how the interference to a person’s nervous system takes place to begin with. Did the bone move out of place thus affecting the nerve which then affects the muscle? Bones cannot move by themselves so there must have been a muscle imbalance first. Did the muscle imbalance occur first thereby causing the bone to move out of its normal position? Muscles do not think or act on their own so a muscle imbalance can only be the result of an unbalanced nerve supply to the muscles. So, the bone can only move if a muscle moves it and a muscle will only move when the nervous system tells it to. For us then, it makes more sense to address the nervous system first so all else can follow.
If your chiropractor isn’t talking about the nervous system, they are not assessing the nervous system. This means they’re assessing either the muscular or skeletal system. As you can see above, there is value in the care they are providing, but if you’re interested in unleashing your body’s innate ability to heal itself and getting to the root cause of dis-ease, I would suggest finding a chiropractor who talks about and assess your nervous system.
I am known for being gentle and specific while firmly believing in bio-individuality. I may utilize a variety of adjusting techniques throughout your care so that your body can receive the adjustments it needs at the appropriate time and place that is most synergistic for the overall balancing of your nervous system.
I use a tonal analysis through the MC2 technique to determine where the nervous system interference is located within your body and am trained in Diversified, Gonstead, Thompson, Activator, Upper Cervical, Sacro-Occipital Technique (SOT), and Torque Release Technique.
I recommend to check the people that I serve for nervous system interference on a weekly basis. Does this mean they’ll need an adjustment each visit? Nope! The goal is that with consistent chiropractic care, it increases your body’s ability to adapt to life’s stressors and forces. When someone comes in and I check them for interference and they don’t have any, we celebrate that!
It’s important to always stay proactive because the last sign of nervous system interference is pain. There’s dysfunction long before you feel it. This is also why we don’t judge our health based on how we feel — you can’t feel heart disease and cancer — but we judge our health based on how we function. Some intelligent conversations that our body has with us expressing overall function is through our digestion, skin, sleep, and menstrual cycles.