I recently worked on a new patient who had suffered a concussion. I had 3 visits in which to get her better before she had to return to another country. As always, I did my utmost so that her body could heal itself as best as it could. One thing worked in our favor, she was a Buddhist monk.
The reality is that the benefits of my 10 minute adjustment are going to largely depend on what happens the other 23 hours and 50 minutes of any patient’s day. Do they get enough rest so the body can heal? Do they eat well so that their body has the nutrients to rebuild tissue or do they eat processed foods and high carbs that promote inflammation, hence pain, in their body?
Fortunately, in case of my Buddhist patient, she lived a low stress life with high quality food and rest. In talking with her, I was fascinated as she described a certain mindfulness of movement that came with her practice. She was very aware of how her body moved and its place in space.
Nevertheless, the concussion had definitely taken its toll. She had headaches, dizziness and neck pain since the accident several weeks prior. As I examined her, I could see why. Her occiput (head) was fixated and misaligned relative to her neck. I suppose her shaved head made the exam slightly easier than normal. It was easier to see and feel her misalignment. Her neck area also revealed numerous misalignments/fixations or subluxations in chiropractic terms.
I went to work on these areas which do relate to dizziness and headaches via the nervous system, as well as, the rest of her spine where I also found subluxations. These other subluxations were no doubt the result of a lifetime on this planet with the falls and minor accidents and twists that happen to all of us.
On her second visit, I was pleasantly surprised to see how well many of the areas we worked on had loosened up and held their improved alignment. Her symptoms had improved significantly. I again worked on the areas as needed.
On the third visit, I was thrilled to see that almost everything had held its proper alignment. She felt like she was back to her old self. I worked on the last few areas I could find. She thanked me profusely and left.
I’m convinced that if she had been a stressed person working 50 hours a week and eating junk food, her recovery would have taken much longer. For many, this is the reality of life in the 21st century. All the more reason, I believe, to carve out enough time to rest and eat well as a future investment in one’s overall health.
This really underscores the degree to which the success of the chiropractic adjustment depends on the body’s innate ability to heal. This, in turn, depends on many things – not the least of which is the lifestyle of the patient as soon as they step outside the clinic.