5 Common Chiropractic Adjustment Techniques

Chiropractic adjustments are one of the best-known ways to treat chronic back, neck, and joint pain and other muscular and skeletal conditions. Chiropractors use hands-on spinal manipulation to help treat patients who suffer from pain due to car accidents, sports injuries, falls and more. Evidence shows proper alignment of the spine can promote the body to heal itself without surgery or medication. Chiropractors may use these 5 common chiropractic adjustment techniques:

Chiropractor using one of the five common chiropractic adjustment techniques to treat patient

1. Gonstead technique

This is a method that usually involves adjusting the lower back or pelvis while the patient is lying on their side. The goal with this technique is to reduce pain and swelling, restore joints, and improve mobility. The gonstead technique is well known and it is one of the first techniques chiropractic students learn about.

2. Activator technique

During this adjusting technique, a chiropractor sometimes uses a small, hand-held instrument, called an activator adjusting instrument, to deliver gentle impulses to the spine. The force helps to improve range of motion and can treat back pain or migraine headaches. Patient’s say this method is comfortable, and is a great option for seniors.

3. Flexion distraction

This technique may also be called “cox technique” or “decompression manipulation”, and is used on patients to treat conditions in relation to the lumbar spine. This technique doesn’t require much force, and helps take pressure off injured spinal nerves, bulging or herniated discs, scoliosis, facet joint pain, and other conditions. The flexion distraction method feels like a gentle stretch to patients.

4. Thompson, or drop table, technique

This technique uses a special adjustment table with padded sections. These platforms are able to drop an inch or less when the chiropractor applies a quick force to the patient’s body. The subtle dropping motion from the table helps the vertebrae move easier without too much force. This technique is used for patients that are more difficult to move.

5. Diversified technique

During this technique, the chiropractor uses precise hands-on thrusts to align the spine, increase movement, and repair joint dysfunction. This technique is the most popular method chiropractors implement. Patient’s state this technique feels similar to the gonstead technique.

Chiropractic care has existed since 1895 to treat patients’ pain and improve joint function. Chiropractors use these 5 common chiropractic adjustment techniques to treat about 22 million Americans annually. Individuals who are seeking pain relief may be a good candidate for chiropractic treatment.