Chiropractic History: Myths and Facts
by Dr. Cheryl Langley, Marietta, GA
The chiropractic profession possesses a rich heritage that be-gan on September 18, 1895 when Daniel David Palmer gave the first adjustment in Davenport, Iowa. Palmer studied the spine and learned how to free full nerve flow to the body which promoted healing. His son B.J. Palmer later founded Palmer School of Chiropractic, the world’s premier chiropractic college at the turn of the century. Take a minute to learn about common chiropractic myths—and the facts.
MYTH: Spinal adjustments hurt.
FACT: Rather than cause pain, spinal adjustments give relief by removing nerve interference. In 1993, an Ontario Ministry of Health study stated that “no clinical or case-control study de-monstrates or even implies that chiropractic spinal manipula-tion is unsafe in the treatment of low-back pain.”
MYTH: Chiropractors only treat back pain.
FACT: Chiropractic science concerns itself with the relation-ship between the structure (primarily the spine) and the function (coordinated by the nervous system) in the body. This relationship between structure and function affects the restoration and preservation of health in all of the body’s systems. Many problems may be caused by disruptions in the nervous system as a result of spinal misalignments (subluxa-tions).
MYTH: Chiropractors lack education in comparison to medical doctors.
FACT: Doctors of Chiropractic (D.C.) undergo very similar training to Doctors of Medicine (M.D.). After completing four years of undergraduate studies, chiropractic students then go on to complete four to five additional years of graduate studies at an accredited Chiropractic College or University. In addition to their academic and clinical studies, chiropractic students undergo several hundred hours of patient care and management in a clinical setting, and then must take rigorous National Board Exams and State Board Examinations to achieve licensure. Once licensed, chiropractors are often required to receive additional education each year, depending on the state in which they practice.
MYTH: Once you see a chiropractor, you must keep go-ing.
FACT: Millions of people return to a chiropractor, well after their symptoms have passed, as a matter of choice. They realize the difference chiropractic has made in their health and see the value of keeping their spines healthy for life. For example, do you think that healthy teeth can be maintained for a lifetime with sporadic dentist visits? Just as teeth battle plaque regularly, our spinal tissues undergo daily bombardment of stresses originating from bad postural habits, suboptimal work environments, psychological stress, chemical stress and hectic lifestyles. Regular care is optional, but also optimal.
Chiropractors have taught the principles of health for more than a century. It's no wonder that people who choose to see a chi-ropractor for wellness are some of the healthiest people on the planet. Science is now catching up and showing that chiroprac-tic care is one of the best ways to be healthy for life.