THE SPINAL COLUMN
ALPHA CHIROPRACTIC NEWSLETTER
It may come as news to some people but the body can feel great and be really sick...AND...the body can feel terrible and be perfectly healthy? According to current thinking, health is when we feel good, right? If this were true, the preceding statement would make no sense at all. So let's look at a few examples that illustrate this quite well.
I'll begin with fever. Most people believe that fever is a bad thing and the first thing they do is take medicine to bring a fever down. However, fever is the body's natural defense response to an invading organism such as a bacteria or virus. A raised temperature provides a more hostile environment for just such an organism. And fever speeds up the body's chemical processes including making and distributing immune cells at a faster rate. Fever is how the awesome innate intelligence of the body helps to protects us!
Another example is vomiting (a nasty word that makes most of us shudder). Most of us would say that we are SICK to our stomach, right? But suppose we ate some food that was spoiled. The immediate response of our body is to reject that food. We would likely experience nausea and vomiting. Most people want to stop this process because, let's face it...it's mighty uncomfortable. But if we stop the body from doing this to protect us, the toxin from that food would go deeper into our system causing us a great deal of harm.
On the other hand, what about a woman who finds a lump in her breast? She could be the "picture" of health - physically active and feeling great. But, even though she feels fine, there is sickness growing and spreading in her body.
Sometimes with certain diseases, it is too late to treat them once the first symptom is discovered. A good example of this is a fatal heart attack. The first symptom is the last.
I don't want to scare you but I want to prove my point. The point is, how we feel has very little to do with how well our body is functioning and even less to
do with how healthy we are.
What is Health?
I define health as normal function and the ability to successfully ADAPT to the average stresses of your daily life. It is the natural result of the adequate expression of your innate intelligence in your body. Very simply, health is balance, harmony and EASE. Health is when every single part of the body is working in harmony and we are able to adapt to the stresses and changes of the world around us. Health is when we are expressing our fullest potential for physical, mental, emotional, social, and spiritual well being!
If we paid attention to advertisements on television and in magazines, we could assume that when we feel bad we simply take something to make us feel better--and that makes us healthy. We are conditioned to think that health is feeling GOOD - or simply not feeling at all. But health is a great deal more than feeling good. It is working properly. And sometimes working properly doesn't feel good at all. When we feel bad, we tend to either cover up or ignore our symptoms. BUT symptoms are an important message from the body. They are a warning that something may not be not right. It is the awesome innate intelligence of our body trying to tell us something important if we would but stop and listen to that signal.
What can we do to promote health?
If health is when all of the parts of the body are working together in harmony, the MOST IMPORTANT thing we can do is take care of the system that coordinates our body functions. You guessed it! The nerve system.
The brain and the nerve system are responsible for making sure that each part of the body knows what to do and when to do it so that it works in harmony with the other parts of the body. Millions upon millions of messages go from the brain to the body and from the body to the brain every minute of every day of our lives. And every one of those messages passes through the spine.
The spine? Yes, that is why doctors of chiropractic are concerned with maintaining the spine! It is because of its relationship with the nerve system and because of the role of that system in the maintenance of good health and well being.
Doctors of chiropractic are trained to locate, analyze and bring about the correction of vertebral subluxation. This is a vertebra in the spine that has lost its normal alignment and function, is not moving properly, and is causing a loss of proper nerve function. Most people are currently experiencing vertebral subluxations right now.
Subluxation interferes with the ability of the nerve system to do its job. Subluxation reduces the capacity for health and well being. Subluxation robs the body of its adaptability and vitality.
Regular spinal checks for the presence of vertebral subluxation ensure that the nerve system will be as clear as it possibly can. And having a clear nerve system will better guarantee that the body and the brain will get all the messages they are supposed to get.
You can live a life full of energy, vitality, health and well being and you can express it to its fullest with chiropractic! Let people know they should see a chiropractor for regular spinal checks and be sure to include your family so they can be their best also.
Recently, a chiropractic colleague was asked, "Don't you just have to keep getting adjusted forever? I mean, what good is that?!" This idea of becoming addicted to adjustments or even just needing them to keep feeling good is not uncommon in people who have been to a chiropractor themselves, and even those who simply know someone else who has been under care. Many people have no problem taking high blood pressure, diabetes, heart, digestive, cholesterol and other medications for the rest of their lives, so it makes me wonder why should they have a problem with those who see a chiropractor on a regular basis? Still, I would like to address this question.
Just as in every other field, there are both good and bad chiropractors. Some are not very specific in the way they adjust the spine. They do more of a general mobilization than anything and at best it just loosens you up. I've been adjusted by some chiropractors like this and it feels like I was mugged. While this can be very effective at temporarily relieving some symptoms, it rarely does anything that lasts for any period of time. The result is that the patient finds him or herself needing to be adjusted on a very regular basis in order to not feel bad again.
Second, it is possible that the chiropractor is, in fact, a very good and specific adjuster, but the attitude and lifestyle of the practice member can continually recreate problems. The result is then the same in that you would continually have to get adjusted just to keep from feeling bad.
The third possibility is that people wait so long to get care that their health issues may be chronic and even permanent and the only thing the chiropractor can do is give a little relief and keep them from getting worse. If that's the case, then getting adjusted regularly is a great alternative to using drugs or surgery.
It is also possible that people who continually go to the chiropractor have actually received excellent care in every way, and they simply realize that there is a difference between not being sick, and being optimally well! In that case, the only thing they are "addicted to" is being healthy, happy and full of life! We should all be so lucky to be addicted to that!"
All of these explanations are valid, but they only apply to the person who sees chiropractic as a treatment for some kind of pain or other malady. Let's look at this a little differently. When someone works out and gets totally fit and healthy, does he say to himself, "I'm glad I never have to work out again!?" Of course not! If someone is hungry and eats until she isn't hungry anymore, does she say, "Boy, am I glad I don't have to eat again now that I'm full!?" When you wake up after a good night's sleep, totally rested and refreshed, do you think to yourself, "Alright! Now I never have to sleep again!?" Of course these are ridiculous questions. Just because someone eats every day, sleeps every night and works out regularly, it doesn't mean they are addicted to food, sleep and exercise. They simply understand that doing all of these things on a regular basis, along with all of their other healthy lifestyle habits and keeping a positive attitude will ensure that they are their best each day.
The same is true of getting your spine adjusted by your chiropractor. Because of the intimate connections between your spine and your nerve system, making sure your
spine is well-aligned and functioning properly helps ensure that your brain is in contact with every part of your body, and that your whole body functions at the highest level. So you see, getting
adjusted for the rest of your life, helps you experience the BEST of your life!