Chiropractic Treatment in Suwanee
Having pain in your back, neck, or joints can distract you from your work and home life. Many people suffer from chronic musculoskeletal pain, and traditional treatments don’t work for everyone. If you’re trying to find a solution to your pain, consider seeing a Suwanee chiropractor for an evaluation and diagnosis.
How Can Suwanee Chiropractor Treatment Help?
Chiropractic care is focused on the whole person and diagnosing the basic cause or causes of pain. At Optimum Health Rehab, we take the time to get to know each patient, learn their history, and explore their symptoms. Additionally, we use a high-tech suite of diagnostic equipment, including X-rays, CT scans, and nerve conduction studies.
Back, neck, or musculoskeletal pain can have multiple causes. Here are some common sources of pain and what we can do about them:
Spinal misalignment, or vertebral subluxation, occurs when one of the 33 vertebrae that make up the spine moves or slides out of alignment. Because the vertebrae are supposed to move easily, making your various activities possible, it’s not hard for a subluxation to happen. When it does, you may have pain near the misaligned vertebrae, as well as referred pain farther away.
Here are some common causes of spinal misalignment:
- You slept wrong. It’s true – sleeping in an awkward position can push one or more vertebrae out of alignment. Falling asleep in a chair or the car are common culprits, but you can also wake up in your bed in an unusual position. If you tend to move around a lot in your sleep, there may not be much you can do about it, but seeing a chiropractor regularly can help deal with the subluxations.
- Growth or bone deformities. If the spine is curved or unusual in some way, this can increase the risk of misalignments. For example, patients with scoliosis, or curvature of the spine, are more likely to suffer from back pain and vertebral subluxation. If you have scoliosis, visits with a chiropractor are recommended.
- Repetitive motions. Often when people think of repetitive motion injuries, the first thing that comes to mind is carpal tunnel syndrome, which is usually caused by repetitive wrist motions like using a mouse or cutting hair. However, repetitive motions can also affect the spine. For example, many people will repeatedly lean or reach in one direction in the course of doing their job. This can push one or more vertebrae out of line, causing pain and discomfort.
- Poor nutrition. Highly processed foods are everywhere, and they can be hard to ignore. Indulging in moderation is one thing, but if you’re eating mostly processed foods with few fruits and vegetables, you might not be getting all the nutrients you need to keep your bones and joints healthy. Aside from correcting your subluxations, your chiropractor can also review your diet and offer nutritional advice to help you improve bone and muscle strength.
- Physical or emotional stress. Most people have multiple sources of stress in their lives. This stress might come from physical labor, like standing on their feet all day at work or moving a lot of heavy boxes, or emotional stress, such as tension at work or disagreements with your spouse or family members. Regardless of the source of stress, it can have a negative impact on your body. When we are stressed, often our muscles tense up, and this puts more strain on the spine, increasing the risk of misalignments. Sometimes we recommend massage therapy to help relieve stress, or we order blood tests to look at the patient’s levels of cortisol, one of the body’s leading stress hormones.
- A car accident, sports injury, or any sudden impact. The force of a car crash or being tackled in a ball game with your friends can push vertebrae out of place. Many people come to us because of lingering pain from a car accident or sports injury that their doctor brushed off or failed to diagnose properly. In some cases, this is due to a vertebral subluxation that we can correct.
How are spinal misalignments treated? Typically, we start with X-rays and other diagnostic tests, and then we examine your spine. We will do this on a special table designed for a chiropractic adjustment so that when we locate a subluxation, we can correct it with a sudden, controlled force that pops the vertebrae back into alignment. Don’t worry – this is not painful and is usually over in a few seconds.
Muscle Pain or Injuries
Muscle strain, which occurs when a muscle is overstretched or overused, is a common injury. Most people feel better with a few days of rest, but some develop chronic muscle pain after a car crash or sports injury. Often chronic pain is due to microscopic tears in the muscle, which may not heal easily for every patient. These might not show up on imaging tests and are hard to diagnose. However, if you have a persistent muscle injury, there are treatment options. At Optimum Health Rehab, we may recommend massage therapy or regenerative medicine to help with muscle pain.
Myofascial Pain Syndrome
Most people have a general idea of what the bones, muscles, and spine are and how they work. But very few people have ever heard of myofascial tissue, although it lines all the bones, muscles, and organs in your body.
Myofascial pain syndrome is a chronic pain disorder that usually follows a muscle injury. When muscle contracts repeatedly, such as if you’re doing a repetitive motion or feeling a lot of stress, a knot or spasm may form in the myofascial tissue, which is typically soft and pliable. This knotted area sometimes called a trigger point, then becomes stiff and inflexible, which can make it harder for you to move around. You may feel muscle pain near the knot or farther away (referred pain). Over time your muscles may feel more sensitive, and your range of motion may be more limited.
Doctors often treat myofascial pain syndrome with medications for pain relief, but these could have side effects, and they don’t treat the root cause of your pain – the trigger points or knots in your myofascial tissue. At Optimum Health Rehab, we often use massage therapy, in which a therapist carefully locates each knot and works until it relaxes or becomes soft and pliable. Our physical therapist may also advise you on stretching or other exercises to help you reduce stress and regain any lost range of motion.
Nerve Pain or Damage
Nerve pain often co-occurs with one or more other causes of pain, but failing to address it can mean that your pain is never fully resolved. This is why we typically ask questions about what your pain feels like – symptoms like burning, tingling, or numbness are common when you have nerve damage. We may also do a nerve conduction test, in which we observe how well a low-voltage current is transmitted through your nerves in the affected area.
The standard treatment for nerve pain is an anticonvulsant like Gabapentin, as this class of drugs works on the brain and can dampen pain signals for some patients. However, many people tell us that these medications cause side effects like drowsiness and confusion or that they don’t work very well. As a result, patients often come to us looking for alternative treatments.
After diagnosing your nerve pain, we may have several treatment options to consider. We try to determine why you’re having nerve pain, and if it’s because of a misaligned bone or joint pressing on the nerve, we will usually correct this with spinal manipulation. In some cases, simply relieving the pressure on the nerve provides significant pain relief. Frequently we also advise you to see a physical therapist, who can help you work on ways to continue relieving pressure on the nerve. Depending on the causes of your nerve pain, they might recommend that you adjust your posture, do exercises to strengthen certain muscle groups, or even invest in a more ergonomic chair if you spend a lot of time sitting at work.
If you’ve been in pain for a long time, your nerve damage may be permanent, and even removing the source of pressure on the nerve won’t fully resolve your symptoms. But in this case, there may still be options for treating your pain. Often we have success using electrical stimulation to interfere with pain signals traveling between the nerves and the brain.
Get Help with Suwanee Chiropractic Treatment Today
If you’ve been struggling to get a diagnosis and treatment for your pain, please give us a call at Optimum Health Rehab. Our staff members will schedule an appointment for us to evaluate your symptoms and diagnose your difficulties. Next, we’ll present you with a treatment plan that may include one or multiple treatment options mentioned above. Our friendly staff members are always ready to assist you, so please contact us online or call (678) 546-0550 today for more information about how chiropractic treatment can help you.