A spinal segment which is not aligned or moving appropriately will degenerate. A study published in 2007 evaluated the spines of mice when metal links were implanted onto a series of spinal bones to prevent specific vertebral movement. The results were more remarkable than the researchers had anticipated. Immobility in the spine produced significant decay and degeneration. After 1-4 weeks of decreased movement in a spinal vertebra, surfaces of the bone and discs began to degenerate. After 4-8 weeks of reduced spinal bone mobility, bone spurs began to form at the edges of the immobile vertebrae. The most important finding of this research revealed that if movement was not restored in the first 1-4 week time frame, irreversible degeneration occurred.
The same applies to humans. When a spinal vertebra loses its mobility, the degenerative process sets in. Many scientists often refer to this process as a negative glitch in the body’s programming. Yet that is simply not true. The degenerative process is a protective mechanism. Bone spurs are much like callouses which grow on the surface of the hand or feet from repeated stress. They occur to protect that part or area.
The way to reduce or prevent the degenerative process is to keep the spine aligned and moving. Chiropractors are trained to detect misaligned or poorly moving vertebrae. If found, a Chiropractor will adjust them to restore alignment and movement. The adjustment process not only improves brain and neurological function, but it reverses and prevents the deterioration of discs, joints, and vertebrae.
As the spine degenerates, the health and function of an individual will deteriorate as well. Chiropractors are devoted to stopping this degenerative process from progressing. Poor posture and abnormal spinal health have been linked directly to increased risk of disease, disability, and pain. Many of these problems can be avoided by correcting and maintaining the health and condition of the spine.
A small and silent (non-pain producing) misalignment in the spine can create significant long-term health consequences. Nothing improves spinal health better than regular Chiropractic evaluations and adjustments for adults and children of all ages. Chiropractic is safe and effective for all.
Research will continue to prove the necessity of Chiropractic for the purpose of staying mobile, healthy, and drug-free for as long as possible. Living independently with a great quality of life is a goal many can relate with. Chiropractors are dedicated to help families achieve such goals through regular and specific chiropractic care.
Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics March 2007
“Introducing the External Link Model for Studying Spine Fixation and Misalignment, Part 1- Need, Rationale, and Applications.”
C Henderson, G Cramer, Q Zhang, J DeVocht, J Fournier