Spinal manipulation is a manual therapy technique used by practitioners from a variety of fields including osteopathy, chiropractic, and physical therapy. The successful application of this technique requires advanced training where the practitioner learns to apply a small, quick force to your joints in an attempt to restore normal joint mobility.
Some people are surprised to hear the “pop” their joints make during a manipulation. It’s important to note that this popping sound is not the goal of the treatment, but merely a byproduct of moving the joint rapidly. The actual goal of the treatment is to improve pain-free motion.
The physical therapists at Essential Physical Therapy in Eugene, Oregon are well trained in this treatment, and through evaluation of your movement and palpating your joints for tightness, they can decide if you will benefit from manipulation.
Manipulation can be applied to most joints in your body, though it is most utilized in the spinal column. The so-called “facet joints” of the spine can frequently get “stuck” to the extent that two opposing joint surfaces lose their ability to glide on one another. A well-trained practitioner can identify this joint restriction, and apply the appropriate force to the tight area in the same way a trained carpenter can sink a nail in the exact right place. Rapid pain relief is often forthcoming.
Conditions that respond well to manipulation include:
Lower back pain
Degenerative joint disease of the spine
Arthritis of the spine
Facet joint arthropathy
Sacroiliac dysfunction (SI joint)
There are people who are reluctant to undergo manipulation. Luckily, the physical therapists at Essential Physical Therapy have many other techniques useful for improving joint mobility and decreasing pain.
Back and neck pain are a normal part of almost everyone’s life. If your pain is lingering though, you’re suffering needlessly. After scheduling an appointment with Essential Physical Therapy, you should know within 1-2 sessions if physical therapy can help your problem.