MARCH 2011

Asking the Wrong Questions

          A problem chiropractors too often face is being asked the wrong questions. There is a saying that there is no right answer to a wrong question.
          Recently, someone in a social setting asked me the wrong question. It was the beginning of spring and he wanted to know if I saw more people with musculoskeletal problems in the springtime because people tend to be more active in the spring after winter "hibernation."
          Since my objective is not to treat musculoskeletal problems I really do not even note whether people are coming in the office with that type of problem.  If I had responded to this question with a yes or no answer, I would have perpetuated this person's mistaken impression of what chiropractic is about. So I had to explain that while I see some people coming in regularly with musculoskeletal problems, my practice focuses on having families come in irrespective of physical problems.
          I work diligently to educate my practice members so that they understand that having a good nerve supply is important to their overall well-being and aches or pains, especially those associated with increased springtime activity, have very little to do with a person's health and well-being.
          Chiropractors are constantly faced with how to answer the "wrong questions." For example, "What can chiropractic do for __________?" is a wrong question that we are frequently asked. Similarly, "Can chiropractic help my __________?" (You can fill in just about any medical problem or condition.)  It is possible to answer a wrong question but usually the answer has to be very involved and the person is looking for a quick response like yes chiropractic can or no it cannot.
          In truth the answer is somewhere in between. We do not take care of medical conditions, that is the practice of medicine but we do take care of people with medical conditions all the time.
          It just makes sense that anyone with any medical condition should want a good nerve supply so that their body has the greatest ability to handle their condition, whether they are utilizing medical care or not.
          Of course, the important point that question misses the fact that people who have no medical problem need chiropractic just as much. If you want to stay healthy, if you want your body to work at its maximum potential in every area of life, then you need a good nerve supply.
          You can see that it is not easy to answer a wrong question.
          It is even harder for the non-professional or the practice member to answer a wrong question from their friend or loved one. How do you answer someone who says to you, "Do you think your chiropractor can help my _________?"
          Now you know that a person with headaches, back pain, allergies, stomach ulcers or just about any other problem is better off being adjusted, not because chiropractors treat those conditions but because people have a better chance of getting well when their nerve systems are clear.
          Yet, if you answer "yes" to the question, you mislead this friend or loved one into thinking chiropractic treats those conditions. If you answer "no" then the person will probably never avail themselves of the benefits of chiropractic care.
          So what can you do? How can you answer a wrong question?
          If you explain to your friends and loved ones exactly what we do as chiropractors before they ask you about medical conditions, you will prevent the asking of a wrong question.
          If you direct them to my website and give them any of the information I have given you (newsletters, pamphlets, etc.) that helps explain what chiropractic in our office is all about, you can possibly forestall the asking of a wrong question.
          Here's the secret. People who understand chiropractic may still have questions but they are less likely to ask the wrong questions and more likely to ask the right questions. If everyone knew about chiropractic care, wrong questions would not be asked, a good deal more people would be enjoying the benefits of chiropractic and this would be a better community.
          Help me educate this community about chiropractic.

Towards a Better Understanding of Chiropractic

          MOSTpeople think Chiropractic care is some kind of ALTERNATIVE treatment for…
          Neck pain, back pain, headaches, ADHD, allergies, asthma, auto accidents, bed wetting, cancer, carpal tunnel, colic, ear infections, headaches, high blood pressure, neck pain, pinched nerves,  "pins and needles", PMS, pregnancy, sciatica, scoliosis, "slipped" or herniated disc, sports and performance enhancement, stress, whiplash ... or whatever else they suffered from that chiropractic seemed to help with. 
          But the truth is Chiropractic doesn't directly "treat" or "cure" anything!  It is not an alternative to anything either, because nothing does the same thing it does.
          Does this mean that Chiropractic doesn’t help?  Absolutely not! Chiropractic care is awesome!  Chiropractic care has helped millions of people live happier, healthier, and more productive lives.  I see miracles in my office everyday!  There are volumes of research and case studies demonstrating tremendous benefit for the conditions listed above.
          However, directly treating anything— whether pain or disease— has never been the true objective of Chiropractic.
          The original objective of Chiropractic was to study and understand LIFE, and what makes things LIVE and thrive. Conversely, the objective of medical (therapeutic) science has always been the study of DISEASE and what makes things die.
          Chiropractic was founded upon a LIFE PRINCIPLE.
          What is a life principle?
          Early philosophers understood that there was something” PRESENT in a living body that was ABSENT in a dead body. They recognized that a living body was more than just its parts and pieces.
          Scientists tell us that the only indicator of death is the complete cessation of brain activity. Therefore, a TRUE indicator of LIFE is …some type of brain activity!
          The early developers of Chiropractic correctly surmised that “this something” called "LIFE" was somehow directly connected with the brain and its vast nerve network within the body. They suggested that this “LIFE ENERGY” flowed from the BRAIN to the BODY through the spinal cord and along the vast network of nerves stirring the cells to LIFE. And that ANY disruption in the flow of this “Life sustaining energy” would weaken the WHOLE person to some degree — sometimes setting the stage for illness and disease, sometimes not — but ALWAYS rendering that person LESS than fully WHOLE.
          Your body and mind require a proper CONNECTION between your brain and your body to function at all. The clearer this connection, the STRONGER and HEALTHIER your body and mind will be. The more disrupted this connection is, the WEAKER and SICKER your body and mind will be.
          So what does this have to do with Chiropractic?
          Because your spine is intimately connected with your spinal cord and nerves, ANY loss of alignment or spinal function WILL interfere with your brain-body connection — sometimes resulting in noticeable diseases and infirmities, sometimes not — but ALWAYS WEAKENING your body and mind, and leaving you less than fully WHOLE.
          The ONLY purpose for a Chiropractic adjustment is to RESTORE better/normal alignment and function to your spine, which helps RE-ESTABLISH a CLEARER brain-body connection.  Doing this REGULARLY throughout your life, helps your body and mind become PROGRESSIVELY STRONGER and more BALANCED. This often results in a better healing capacity, increased flexibility, stronger immune system, better ability to handle stress without your body breaking down, less overall pain, less use of medication, etc.   But as important as those things are… they are just the tip of the iceberg!
          TRUEChiropractic has NOTHING to do with back pain, neck pain or headaches! It has everything to do with LIFE and how WELL you will LIVE!
          LIVE WELL!

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