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What is Subluxation?

To explain what a subluxation is I will first have to explain how your nervous system works when it is functioning normally. Usually, how your nervous system works starts with a signal from the brain. This signal, originating in the brain, travels down your brainstem which turns into the spinal cord which is protected by the spine (your backbone). At a certain point, the signal exits the spinal cord through a spinal nerve and continues down your peripheral nerves. This is the point when the signal arrives at its target, whether that is your heart, your liver or your spleen the signal has arrived and is ready to direct the target tissue on what to do. Normally, that signal goes through all the above steps with no problems it is unaltered and arrives right on time, like the trains in Germany. Because the signal has arrived exactly when it was supposed to and it has the correct information the target tissue, as stated before heart liver or spleen, does exactly what it is supposed to do. In the case of the heart it speeds up, slows down or keeps beating at the same pace. In the case of the liver and the spleen they can either work faster or slower. But let's say something happened to the signal. What do your think would happen?

If the signal is interfered with at some point along its path any number of things could happen. In the case of the signal to the heart, let's say you had to react to leap out of the way of a car that jumped the curb. Your fight or flight response floods your blood stream with adrenaline (epinephrine) your heart races and you leap from the path of the car. You have just avoided a swift demise, but let's look at the signal going to the heart. Normally, after you heroically jumped out of the way of the car your brain starts to send signals to your heart to "slow down" and "relax". If the signal is interfered with along the way it takes longer to arrive or it arrives changed. Both of these options spell out a bad outcome as it relates to your health. In both cases the heart is working harder than it has to. There is no problem with an elevated heart rate as long as it returns to normal, but a prolonged stress reaction caused by a nervous system that cannot relay the proper signals could lead to chronically high blood pressure and an enlarged heart due to abnormal stress.

The interference to the signal described above is a subluxation. Simply stated, a subluxation is a bone out of place and not moving correctly that is putting pressure on the nervous system and interrupts the signal between the brain and the body. Subluxations happen in the spine, and the spine is the connection between the brain and the body. If you have subluxations in your spine similar miscommunications (stated above) could be happening to you. There are three ways you can acquire a subluxation physical, chemical and emotion (thoughts, traumas, toxins). The physical manner is easy to understand, you fall down the stairs and you can injure a spinal joint and have it interfere with your nervous system as stated above. That is called a macro-trauma, you can also acquire subluxations from micro-traumas like bending over every time you pick something up instead of squatting. The chemical route is a little more difficult to understand. This route involves unbalanced body chemistry which makes it difficult for your muscles to do their job of holding your spine in proper alignment. There are an unbelievable amount of chemical reactions happening in your body every second, if they don't happen properly stress is put on your body, this is why improper body chemistry can give you a subluxation. The third means of becoming subluxated is an emotional route. Your posture is highly tied into your emotions, if you are sad you tend to slouch, if you are angry you tense up. If you body is subjected to these swings in emotion and posture enough you can become subluxated. There is also some overlap between emotional and chemical means of subluxation because of the fact that your emotions influence your body chemistry as well.

With all of the above information presented I would be remiss if I didn't stress that only a competent and focused Chiropractor can fix these subluxations. I say competent because we all know there are doctors of all kind that should not have a license but do. I say focused because not only does your Chiropractor need to be focused when searching for your subluxations, they need to be focused on finding subluxations in the first place. Believe it or not there are Chiropractors out there who don't look for subluxations. You need to find one who does; the easiest way is to ask. If I were you I would ask his/her patients and see if they know the term subluxation. If they don't its probably because their doctor isn't looking for them. The other aspect of finding an excellent Chiropractor is finding one whose intent is to hunt for subluxations. You will know if you have found one if he/she checks your spine every visit. You cannot say you are searching for subluxations if you are not checking the place where they reside.

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