It is important to remember a simple, but honest truth about pain. Pain is the body’s way of telling the brain that something is wrong. This truth holds true with other phenomenon such as swelling. Pain and swelling are the natural ways in which our body controls our use of specific parts in order for healing to occur.
Think about it. If you sprain your ankle and you experience pain and swelling, you are actually experiencing the healing process. The swelling controls the motion happening in the ankle, stabilizing it against movement that would otherwise prove harmful to the affected area. Pain is the body’s way of telling you to stop using your ankle while it is healing. These two things together are providing you with the information that you are injured; hence, you should reduce the usage of your ankle until the pain and swelling have subsided.
Unfortunately, as a society, we are quick to mask such pain as it is a modern inconvenience to our busy lifestyles. We may take a medication to reduce the swelling and pain, but we are actually just dulling the natural healing process. If pain is a way of telling you that a body part is injured, what happens when a pill reduces our ability to feel that pain? Perhaps we will begin to use our injured ankle in a way that we are not yet ready for, ultimately disrupting the healing process? If swelling is our natural protection from harmful motion, what happens when a pill reduces that swelling?
Although uncomfortable, and sometimes debilitating, pain and swelling are useful tools utilized by the body to do something extraordinary. That extraordinary thing is healing! Not only is it healing, but healing without your input. You do not have to tell your brain to begin the healing process, as it is automatic. This process, at its core, is all controlled by the nervous system.
You have three main parts to your nervous system. They are the brain, spinal cord, and a twelve mile long system of nerves that runs to every cell, tissue, and organ in your body. These three parts play an integral role in your overall health. They control every function in your body at lightning speed and often without any thought to the matter. Things are happening within your body at every second of the day that are controlled by your nervous system. These tasks controlled by the nervous system are the essence of life. Without them, you could not function.
Chiropractic care is centered on proper nervous system function at the very root of where most problems occur, your spine. You have 24 bones that make up your spine and protect a very vital part of your nervous system, the spinal cord. Between every bone in your spine, nerves are exiting through small holes and traveling to specific areas of your body. A subluxation is a condition where one or more bones of your spine move out of place, creating pressure on the nerves and reducing their overall ability to function at a peak level.
Dr. Chung Ha Suh of the University of Colorado showed that even a small pressure (about the weight of a dime) on a nerve can reduce the function of the nerve by 60 percent and that the nerve will start to degenerate if the pressure is sustained for three hours*. If vital information for your overall body function is carried by your nervous system, what happens when a small pressure (the weight of a dime) reduces the nerves ability to carry that information by 60%? How does our body then communicate with your brain to carry out proper function?
A doctor of chiropractic is trained to analyze and adjust subluxations within your spine, restoring your nerve function and allowing your body to function at an optimal level.
Think again to the example of a sprained ankle. What if the pain and swelling occur, but in association with a subluxation affecting the ability for needed information to be transmitted to the ankle for healing? You might surmise that healing would be slower, as your nervous system is reduced in its ability to function.
Chiropractic is the key to restoring your body’s ability to function at its full potential and do what it does naturally, heal!