Chiropractors have been treating arthritis and the associated issues for a long time now, and have developed a number of techniques to help target the pain, tension and movement restrictions that people with arthritis often experience. Some of the treatments available from chiropractors for treating arthritis are chiropractic adjustments, physiotherapy, dry needling and ultrasound therapy.
The core treatment offering by chiropractors is chiropractic adjustment, which uses gentle spine and joint manipulation in order to realign the spine and correct the positioning of the body. This is particularly useful for those suffering from arthritis for a number of reasons:
- Improving mobility in the body. Arthritis can cause joint restriction, muscle tension and reduced mobility in the affected areas. Chiropractors can use gentle adjustments to help bring motion back into stiff joints and stimulate healthy movement in the body.
- Reducing Pain. Chiropractic manipulation can reduce pain caused by irritated nerves and stiff muscles by relieving the pressure from joints and restoring the correct position to the bones and muscles.
- Treating secondary pain syndrome. Arthritic pain in one area of the body can often lead to issues in other parts of the body. For example, knee pain can cause someone to overcompensate with their other leg. This can cause the spine and hips to misalign and creates pain in the lower back. Chiropractors can help treat these misalignments and bring the overall pain the patient is experiencing down to manageable levels.
Aside from chiropractic adjustments, there are many other treatments that chiropractors use for those suffering from arthritis that can help supplement and reinforce the effect of spinal and joint manipulation.
One of the core problems that sufferers of arthritis experience are joint pain and stiffness which can severely impair their ability to move correctly. This can seriously impact not just the enjoyment they take out of life but their ability to perform everyday activities like walking upstairs, cooking, cleaning and going to work.
Physiotherapy focuses on the ability of the body to move correctly and is often used by chiropractors to help address the problem of mobility in arthritic patients. This involves providing exercise plans for strengthening the body and reducing pain, teaching correct posture and educating patients on the use of assistive devices including canes, walkers, ergonomic chairs or cushioned mats.
Dry needling focuses on relieving pain from myofascial trigger points, which are taut bands in skeletal muscle and fascia which can cause referred pain in other parts of the body. This technique involves inserting a needle into the myofascial trigger point in order to relax the soft tissue that it is connected to, this helps reduce pain and increase body function, which is a key issue for people suffering from arthritis.
Another treatment often offered by chiropractors is ultrasound therapy, which uses the vibrations from an ultrasound device to release heat and energy around tortured muscles and joints. This can help reduce the pain experienced by patients and when used in conjunction with the other therapies mentioned above can significantly improve the quality of life of arthritis sufferers.