Is Chiropractic Care Safe for Older Adults?

Chiropractic services have become popular for those seeking immediate relief from physical ailments such as headaches, lower back and shoulder pain, neck problems, and the like. Medline Plus explains that the practice of chiropractic care dates back to 1895, when Daniel David Palmer pushed on the vertebra of a deaf janitor in Davenport, Iowa, and restored the man’s hearing. A college of chiropractic medicine was then founded two years later, where Palmer began to teach manipulation techniques to students who eventually spread the practice around the world.

What is Chiropractic Care?

Twin Waves Wellness Team

Chiropractic care is now characterized by hands-on spinal manipulation and other alternative treatments. The theory explains that proper alignment of the body’s musculoskeletal structure and spine will help the body heal itself without surgery or medication.

It can provide relief from tissue injuries that are often caused by traumatic events, like sports injuries, or repetitive stress, like incorrect posture. Furthermore, the Northeast College of Health Sciences highlights how chiropractic specialties are expanding, and the demand for the service continues to grow across the country.

Is it Safe for Older Adults?

That said, plenty of older adults with physical ailments might be interested in availing of these services but are intimidated by the process of alignment. The truth is, patients of all ages can find relief in their chiro sessions — these practices are overall safe and beneficial. Though as with any other physical treatment, it’s best to consult with your doctor first.

If you are under a Medicare Plan, KelseyCare explains that consultation expenses may be covered under plan B, as long as your doctor deems it medically necessary. They may give you the go signal or help you assess whether you have underlying illnesses that could prevent you from getting chiro treatment.

But as mentioned, an estimated 35 million adults in the US have been treated by chiropractors annually. There are also currently 70,000 registered chiropractors in the country. In a journal article published in BMC Geriatrics, 6,781 chiro-adult patient encounters across two countries were studied. And it was found that one in seven patients were over 65 years old. Moreover, 23% of older adults experience back pain, which is one of the most treated ailments of chiropractors worldwide.

Pros and Cons

One of its benefits can include immediate pain relief caused by the calming of the subluxation or inflammation within one’s spine. Because it doesn’t require surgery, it can also save you a lot of time, money, and discomfort from the healing process. It also doesn’t call for medication, which is beneficial for seniors who are already taking a variety of maintenance medications. Professional chiropractic care can also grant you a proper range of motion, making for an increased quality of life. Lastly, it can increase mobility and prevent falls among the elderly.

Note that going to an unregistered chiropractor or foregoing a preliminary appointment with your doctor could put you at risk for bone damage, especially for those who suffer from osteoporosis or osteoarthritis. Patients with this condition could be at risk for bone damage and fractures. Incorrect chiro practices could also lead to nerve damage especially with the manipulation of the neck. At the very least, many patients can experience some soreness after treatment, which is an aftereffect of putting things back into place.

The discomfort should go away after a while. However, this is why you should prioritize consulting with a professional beforehand and making sure that you’re going to an accredited practitioner.

Overall, chiropractic care is relatively safe and reliable for seniors. If you’re interested in availing of chiropractic services or learning more about them, visit us at Twin Waves Wellness Center.

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