The purpose of the adjustment is to restore joint position and mobility by applying a controlled force to a restricted joint. Joint restrictions are most often caused by poor posture, occupation, or trauma. The adjustment to a restricted joint restores proper movement, relieves pressure on surrounding nerves, reduces pain & muscle tightness, and allows tissues to heal. The following are the different types of adjusting we perform at our clinic:
Standard Adjusting: As gentle as the patient prefers, this the most common adjusting technique associated with Chiropractic. It involves quick, light pressure to a joint, often causing a popping sound due to the sudden release of built-up pressure in the joint. It is extremely safe, usually painless, and most patients feel relief after the adjustment.
Extremity Adjusting: Our doctors are certified in extremity adjusting. Just like the joints of the spine, there are joints in the shoulders, ribs, arms, legs, and feet that can also stop moving correctly. When this happens it is usually painful and need to be adjusted (this is called Extremity Adjusting). If left untreated, they can lead to carpal tunnel, frozen shoulder, bursitis, plantar fasciitis, etc. Much like spinal adjusting, extremity adjusting is usually painless and most patients feel relief afterwards.
“Pop-Free” Adjusting: the following techniques are softer chiropractic treatment techniques that can be used for all patients, especially those who may not want or cannot have a standard adjustment.
Activator Adjusting Tool: Instead of delivering the adjustment by hand, the Activator Adjusting Tool uses a hand-held, spring-loaded instrument to deliver light and quick pressure to a restricted joint.
Drop Table Adjusting: This is where the patient lies face down on one of our special tables with sections that drop down. The chiropractor uses a lever to cock the table up 1 inch and then applies a quick thrust to make the section drop back down. The dropping of the table allows for a lighter adjustment without the twisting positions that can accompany other techniques.
Mobilization & Positional Release: This is the same setup as a Standard Adjustment, however instead of delivering a light and quick thrust at the end, the area is held in this position for approximately two to three minutes to let the joint naturally release and reposition on its own. This technique involves no force to the patient.
Flexion-Distraction: This is controlled traction and stretching on a mechanical table to specific spinal segments. This technique is especially effective for disc herniations, scoliosis, severe arthritis, and very tight muscles or ligaments.
SOT Blocking: Padded triangular-shaped blocks are placed under the spine, pelvis, and hips to naturally allow gravity to mobilize restricted areas.
Massage: Every visit you will have a massage prior to treatment. Most of the time it will be 30-60 minutes with one of our Massage Therapists, while sometimes its 8-10 minutes with the Doctor. We find that the massage helps release the joints for an adjustment much easier. By initially calming down the muscles, the adjustments take less force, the joints don’t lock back up as easily, and patients get better faster. Most patients report that this muscle work feels good.
Vibration Massage: We use a comfortable, electric vibration massager to also help relieve tight muscles before an adjustment. Variable speeds allow the option of increased or decreased intensity, depending on the sensitivity of the body area.
Myofascial Release & Trigger Point Therapy: When there are very tight muscles or trigger points (tiny sensitive nodules, or knots, in the muscles), our doctors can perform more focal muscle work to release these areas. The results are excellent.
Tool-Assisted Soft Tissue Release: Our Chiropractors have been trained in Graston Technique and have used it in the past, currently they perform a similar tool-assisted treatment. The instrument works like a tuning fork, where it resonates over muscular areas that have been damaged. This treatment relieves tendonitis, breaks down scar tissue, reduces trigger points, and helps resolve chronic injuries.
Pin & Stretch: This technique is for muscles and tendons that have significant contraction and tension. This is when the doctor pins a muscle with their thumb and then moves the body to stretch the muscle, effectively stripping the muscles of adhesions. This can also be done actively, where the doctor pins the muscle and then the patient moves through a range of motion in order to stretch the muscle.
Rehabilitative Exercises & Active Stretching: We place a large emphasis on increasing function in day-to-day activities, which is accomplished through teaching specific exercises and stretches. We are 1 of only 2 chiropractic clinics in Oregon who’ve been trained in the renown ADAPT Therapy Rehabilitation Program. The degree of training intensity depends solely on how far the patient wants to take it – whether its return to sport or simply to stay out of pain. Regardless, when correct home rehab program is implemented there is significantly decreased risk of future problems.
Kinesio-Tape: you may have noticed Olympic or professional athletes wearing this brightly-colored, strange-looking tape. Kinesio-Tape is an elastic, lightweight tape that is used for both new and recurring injuries. Kinseio-tape stabilizes an injured area while decreasing muscle spasm and inflammation through several different neurological mechanisms. Clinically Kinesio-Tape has shown to be beneficial in tendonitis, ligament sprains, muscle strains, plantar fasciitis, as well as painful neck/shoulder/ribs/low back/hips/knee/ankle/foot.
Cold Laser (Low Level Light Therapy): Cold laser is an FDA-approved use of specific wavelengths of light (red and near infrared) to aid in healing at the cellular level for both new and old injuries. How it works: ATP, or Adenosine Triphosphate (the cellular energy unit used by the body) is created after the light is absorbed at the injured area. In turn there is increased tissue repair, reduced inflammatory mediators, and decreased pain at the injured area. Treatment lasts around 8 minutes is completely pain-free. Conditions that have been shown to benefit clinically from Cold Laser is muscle strains, ligament sprains, tendonitis, TMJ Syndrome, and disc herniations.
Ultrasound: Ultrasound has been a widely used and accepted adjunct modality for the management of many musculoskeletal conditions. The most common uses for ultrasound is to decrease soft tissue inflammation/swelling, increase tissue extensibility, increase soft tissue healing, and decrease pain,
Electrotherapy: is the use of electric current to stimulate the nerves for therapeutic purposes. Electrodes are placed at an injured area to deliver electrical impulses to allows safe nerve stimulation to reduce pain, both acute and chronic.
Ice/Heat: Depending on the injury, we will use clay heat packs or ice jell packs. The doctor will determine whether heat or ice should be applied, with the goal to affect cellular metabolism, inflammation, or spasm.