You might remember that I started seeing a chiropractor back in late October. I was referred to the chiropractor by my doctor after I became concerned about a constant lump in the right side of my neck. An x-ray revealed that I had a condition called forward head posture, where I hold my head too far in front of my body and thereby place approximately 10 kilograms of additional stress on my shoulders and neck. It also revealed that my hips were out of alignment and that my lumbar vertebrae was almost completely straight instead of naturally curved.
Last week I had my second assessment since my very first session and I’m pleased to announce I have progressed enormously. During my first appointment I had negative results (indicating an underperforming nerve or misalignment) for 17 tests. Just six weeks later, I only had seven negative results. My hips have completely straightened out, and the curve has returned to my lumbar spine.
My headaches were caused by subluxation in my neck, which is when the nerves in the bones of the spine malfunction after the bones have shifted out of place (which is likely to have been caused by a car accident when I was 15). Subluxation can cause pain and swelling as the bones start to fuse together – which is why I could feel a lump in my neck.
Within three weeks of beginning treatment with twice-weekly sessions, the lump in my neck had completely disappeared and my head has moved back an entire centimetre when standing naturally. I have suffered from two migraines – approximately once a month – and they were both related to external factors and definitely not tension headaches. In the months leading up to my diagnosis, I was suffering from at least one migraine a week. The difference is incredible and, as cheesy as it sounds, receiving chiropractic treatment has completely changed my life.
The other indirect result of treatment is the tremendous effect it’s had on my digestive system. For the past two years or so, I’ve suffered terrible bloating. Three to four times a week I would start the day with a completely flat stomach and end it with a belly that looked six months’ pregnant. It was painful, embarrassing and confusing: I had tried all kinds of elimination diets (gluten, dairy, etc), experimented with water and sodium intake, and tried taking supplements but nothing seemed to work. I would eat the exact same thing every day and while some days I would be fine, other days I would become severely bloated.
When I first met with my chiropractor, he gave me a pamphlet which noted that misfiring nerves in the lumbar region can cause digestive problems. During our next session I asked him about it and he said treatments could help, but advised me not to get my hopes up. We haven’t directly targeted that region at all and yet I have not felt bloated once since my very first adjustment.
I never, ever thought that my bloating could be linked to my spine but I will be forever thankful to have had chiropractic treatments. I would highly recommend anyone suffering from unexplained digestive problems to please try seeing a chiropractor. If you’re anything like me, you will notice an immediate difference and your life will be forever improved!
When I first told people I was seeing a chiropractor, the common response was a grimace accompanied by a recommendation to see a physiotherapist instead. My problem was clearly related to my spine so I had no choice but to see a chiro or continue to suffer.
Those who are afraid have obviously never seen a chiro before – the whole experience was painless! He used an instrument that simply tapped the affected areas to wake up the nerves in order for them to function properly. There was some cracking of my neck bones involved, but it was completely optional. I would have achieved the same results without manual adjustments, it just would have taken more time.
Another thing to point out – which I’m very proud of – is that much of my success is linked to things I have done outside of our sessions. He said for someone to have suffered from migraines as long as I have (about 17 years now!) and to see such significant results in less than two months is almost miraculous. He attributed much of my progress to my regular exercise regime and diligence about my prescribed stretching (which most people don’t adhere to!). Of course, my almost life-long migraines are not going to completely disappear after a few treatments, but the reduced frequency is a massive weight off my shoulders (pun intended!).
I’m now down to once-a-fortnight sessions, which we will continue for as long as it takes to correct those final seven misalignments. So, again, if you suffer from migraines or bloating and feel like you have tried everything, please give a chiropractor a go. You have nothing to lose!
Have you ever seen a chiropractor? Do you have any reservations about doing so?