In recent years, healthcare providers in almost every discipline have been focusing more on the overall wellbeing of their patients. They call this an integrative approach to medicine. When we say every discipline, we are referring to areas like general medicine, addiction treatment, and chiropractic treatment.
The reason we are seeing this evolution into integrative treatment is that treatment professionals are looking for ways to go beyond fixing specific problems. By taking an integrative approach, they can address the problem at hand while also addressing other aspects of a patient’s overall health. They feel this is necessary because there seems to always be a direct correlation between an individual’s overall wellbeing health and the causation of specific physical problems.
If you are wondering what an integrative approach includes, you should take a look at the following list:
- Dental Health
- Mental Health
- Physical Health and body function
- Emotional Health
- Sexual Health
The idea behind integrative medicine is whatever the issue at hand might be, the cause or causes could be a result of something going wrong in any of the areas we listed above.
When someone is dealing with legitimate pain issues related to their skeletal system, a chiropractor’s job is to find a solution that fixes the direct source of the pain. That would be the short-term goal of chiropractic treatment. If the chiropractor wanted to get at the real source of the pain, their longterm goal would be to take a more integrative approach to find solutions. By doing so, they can help their patients now and help address possible issues that can prevent further problems in the future.
In the section below, we are going to take a look at how an integrative chiropractic approach might work.
How Does an Integrative Chiropractic Approach Work?
The best way to take a serious look at an integrative chiropractic approach would seem to be laying everything out in an example. Let’s go with that.
Example: Patient A enters a facility that offers chiropractic services. During his initial consultation with their chiropractor, the patient mentions they have been diagnosed with stenosis between their C1 and C2 vertebrae in the neck. The stenosis is causing unbearable pain because of the way it is irritating nerves in their neck area. They don’t want to submit to surgery until they have tried other treatment options. They went to a chiropractor, hoping an adjustment would help.
The chiropractor would want Xrays to make sure chiropractic treatment is a safe choice. As part of a traditional chiropractic treatment option, the chiropractor would make a series of adjustments and look for positive results. They would continue the process until patient A consistently feels better or resolves that chiropractic treatment isn’t working.
If the chiropractor was working within the framework of an integrative chiropractic approach, they would also start with skeletal adjustments. However, they would also start looking for other causes and solutions.
They might decide to investigate patient A’s current diet and exercise regiment. It’s quite possible that someone with poor nutrition is being victimized by small health issues like stenosis because they aren’t getting the right vitamins and minerals in their diet. As far as exercise, the patient’s lack of exercise might be affecting the strength of their muscles, which is causing their skeletal system to intermittently shift. That could be the source of some of the pain.
The next thing the chiropractor might investigate is the patient’s mental/emotional health. Mental issues like anxiety, stress, or depression may be leaving the patient feeling sad and lethargic. If patient A doesn’t have the energy to get their blood circulating, it’s very likely they will start experiencing health issues that affect their body systems (skeletal, respiratory, circulatory).
The endgame of integrative chiropractic treatment is to identify everything that could be contributing to the problem at hand. While a chiropractor might not have the skill set to treat nutrition or mental health issues, they can certainly recommend patient A find other treatment professionals who can treat these other issues. That could result in a nutritionist, psychologist, and chiropractor working together to improve patient A’s overall health, eliminating the possibility of physical issues occuring in the future.
We would love the opportunity to work with you on your pain issues. If you would like more information about our integrative approach to chiropractic treatment, you should schedule an appointment. You can reach out for an appointment by calling one of our representatives at 205-637-1363.