Chiropractic Maintenance

Talks about prevention within a chiropractic office don’t occur as often as the normative lower back and neck pain talks typically will. Many times, patients will come to a chiropractor’s office with what’s called a “chief complaint,” something that has suddenly happened (or has been bugging them for some time) that has made life much more difficult than necessary.What about a patient who doesn’t necessarily have a major complaint? What about a patient who doesn’t have lower back pain, headaches that ruin their day, or bursitis that prevents them from raising their arm above their head? These are the patients who really don’t feel awful, but still believe that there’s some room for improvement in their overall well-being—what many chiropractors will refer to as wellness-based patients. Wellness-based patients or wellness-based care is structured chiropractic care revolving around improving, facilitating, and optimizing the health of an individual so they can live life without a chief complaint. It’s about prioritizing the highest state of health, so that when life throws a curveball, your own nervous system and immune system are able to say, “Hey, I got this.” Don’t get me wrong, life will eventually have its moments when injuries and illness are bound to happen, but in that same breath, we must also acknowledge the importance of doing everything in our power to prevent these things from ever happening in the first place. Enter chiropractic philosophy and the effort to achieve the most optimal state of human health and wellness without the need for surgeries or medications. It’s an approach that prioritizes what your body needs in order to excel in life. While many patients do come in with conditions that require attention, ensuring that just as much attention is given to establishing the homeostasis (balance) of our system in the absence of any perceived problem is also necessary. I say “perceived” because we may not readily feel a problem, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that there isn’t a problem either presently occurring or in the process of developing. This isn’t to say that you have a problem, but it’s also not saying that there’s nothing that could be done to improve your health in some way. For example, maybe you don’t have lower back pain. Interestingly enough, lower back pain and other common conditions seen within our office, such as disc bulges, herniations, and degenerative disc disease, often develop without any symptoms. This means that many people have these conditions, but may not be experiencing any perceived problem. Many times, it’s simply the metaphorical straw that broke the camel’s back (pun intended) that brings patients in. They bent over to pick up their laundry, coughed really hard, did a slightly more strenuous workout, or twisted one way too many times and suddenly the underlying problem surfaced. Another common complaint that we see is headaches or migraines. Many, many, many people experience headaches and migraines frequently throughout their lives. Maybe you had a headache two weeks ago, but now you have one again today. Then you have a third one tomorrow, and afterward, you suddenly have a headache every day. This whole time, there was underlying stress that caused your upper back and neck to tighten and strain your cervical spine. Or perhaps you haven’t been drinking enough water and the weather has been much dryer lately. Maybe you had previous concussions, and now the untreated consequences from head trauma are finally significant enough for you to consciously perceive. The main point is that if we maintain our health, we’re less likely to experience problems. One way to do that is to see your chiropractor routinely to make sure things are functioning optimally. Wellness-based care is important to maintain and improve our overall well-being, create an abundance of health, and prevent any injuries or illnesses from ever happening in the first place. Dr. Richard Schoonmaker is a board-eligible chiropractic neurologist practicing at Restorative Wellness Center in Exton, Pa. He’s currently earning his post-doctorate master’s degree in clinical neurology and has an interest in neurophysiology and its relationship to the autonomic nervous system.

Chiropractic Maintenance

Talks about prevention within a chiropractic office don’t occur as often as the normative lower back and neck pain talks typically will. Many times, patients will come to a chiropractor’s office with what’s called a “chief complaint,” something that has suddenly happened (or has been bugging them for some time) that has made life much more difficult than necessary.

What about a patient who doesn’t necessarily have a major complaint? What about a patient who doesn’t have lower back pain, headaches that ruin their day, or bursitis that prevents them from raising their arm above their head? These are the patients who really don’t feel awful, but still believe that there’s some room for improvement in their overall well-being—what many chiropractors will refer to as wellness-based patients.

Wellness-based patients or wellness-based care is structured chiropractic care revolving around improving, facilitating, and optimizing the health of an individual so they can live life without a chief complaint. It’s about prioritizing the highest state of health, so that when life throws a curveball, your own nervous system and immune system are able to say, “Hey, I got this.” Don’t get me wrong, life will eventually have its moments when injuries and illness are bound to happen, but in that same breath, we must also acknowledge the importance of doing everything in our power to prevent these things from ever happening in the first place.

Enter chiropractic philosophy and the effort to achieve the most optimal state of human health and wellness without the need for surgeries or medications. It’s an approach that prioritizes what your body needs in order to excel in life. While many patients do come in with conditions that require attention, ensuring that just as much attention is given to establishing the homeostasis (balance) of our system in the absence of any perceived problem is also necessary.

I say “perceived” because we may not readily feel a problem, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that there isn’t a problem either presently occurring or in the process of developing. This isn’t to say that you have a problem, but it’s also not saying that there’s nothing that could be done to improve your health in some way.

For example, maybe you don’t have lower back pain. Interestingly enough, lower back pain and other common conditions seen within our office, such as disc bulges, herniations, and degenerative disc disease, often develop without any symptoms. This means that many people have these conditions, but may not be experiencing any perceived problem. Many times, it’s simply the metaphorical straw that broke the camel’s back (pun intended) that brings patients in. They bent over to pick up their laundry, coughed really hard, did a slightly more strenuous workout, or twisted one way too many times and suddenly the underlying problem surfaced.

Another common complaint that we see is headaches or migraines. Many, many, many people experience headaches and migraines frequently throughout their lives. Maybe you had a headache two weeks ago, but now you have one again today. Then you have a third one tomorrow, and afterward, you suddenly have a headache every day. This whole time, there was underlying stress that caused your upper back and neck to tighten and strain your cervical spine. Or perhaps you haven’t been drinking enough water and the weather has been much dryer lately. Maybe you had previous concussions, and now the untreated consequences from head trauma are finally significant enough for you to consciously perceive.

The main point is that if we maintain our health, we’re less likely to experience problems. One way to do that is to see your chiropractor routinely to make sure things are functioning optimally. Wellness-based care is important to maintain and improve our overall well-being, create an abundance of health, and prevent any injuries or illnesses from ever happening in the first place.

Dr. Richard Schoonmaker is a board-eligible chiropractic neurologist practicing at Restorative Wellness Center in Exton, Pa. He’s currently earning his post-doctorate master’s degree in clinical neurology and has an interest in neurophysiology and its relationship to the autonomic nervous system.