For the last ten plus years, more recently as a practicing chiropractor in Gresham, Oregon, I have had the opportunity to talk to many people who have just as many definitions of what chiropractic is. Ultimately, most associate chiropractic with neck pain and back pain and, although we are very good at the resolution of symptoms, that represents the side effect of what we do.
Chiropractic was first practiced in 1895 by D.D. Palmer, its founder, in Davenport, Iowa. Harvey Lillard, the janitor in the building he was working in was deaf and had reported some years previous he had stooped to pick up a box and felt a load pop in his neck, detected a bump that had appeared and shortly thereafter his hearing went away. DD palmer had postulated that if it was a bone out of place that had occurred during the lift, and this perhaps was the cause of his deafness, then moving the bone back into proper alignment would help restore hearing. It worked. Through a series of adjustments Harvey Lillard's hearing was restored. When news spread, people came from far and wide with the hope of curing their deafness. Of course most saw no change in their hearing but the vast majority noted changes in things like improved sleep and digestion and less general illness.
Though chiropractic was seen to be beneficial, it was during the flu epidemic of 1917-18 that chiropractic gained real recognition and licensure. When people had been turned aside by the medical community who couldn’t help them any further, they often turned to the chiropractor with great success. “Statistics reflect a most amazing, almost miraculous state of affairs. The medical profession was practically helpless with the flu victims but chiropractors seemed able to do no wrong.” http://www.danmurphydc.com/Rhodes_Flu.pdf.
It really wasn't until the ‘60s and ‘70s that, in trying to be included in the insurance coverages that the chiropractic profession began to adapt to more of a medical model. Since insurance was based on treating specific conditions and symptoms, treatment plans then were based on the resolution of symptoms.
There is now doubt that modern medicine is very adept at treating the crisis patient, conditions incurred by trauma such as that seen in warfare. In fact, warfare was really how many medical techniques were developed. Hippocrates is quoted as saying that ‘war is the only proper school for a surgeon’. Certainly, medical services have been associated with the military since the days of Ancient Greece. This relationship declined in the Middle Ages, but after a radical reorganization of medicine during the 1700s the links between the two grew stronger with each passing year. http://www.sciencemuseum.org.uk/broughttolife/themes/war.aspx.
Where medicine struggles is with the chronic conditions that plague today’s society. Despite years of research, development of drugs and radical new surgeries, the health of today’s society continues to decline. This is where chiropractic has the opportunity to return to its roots and play a significant role in the return of health to our communities. Looking beyond simple resolution of symptoms by also addressing the underlying cause of dis-ease within the body we can strengthen the body’s ability to achieve health and limit the effects of our modern day environment that is incongruent with that which we were designed to exist.
Chiropractic in its true sense has never been about symptoms, but rather based on four simple concepts:
1. The body is self-regulating and self-healing.
2. The whole human experience is processed through the nervous system, the brain being master and commander.
3. Interference with the proper function of the nervous system can not only cause physical symptoms, but decrease our overall health potential and change general physiology not immediately associated with the problems of the spine.
4. Chiropractors detect and correct the cause of this interference,
Set an appointment today with our office and find out how we can help bring health and prosperity to the canvas of your life…
Yours in health,
Dr. Doug Davies has been practicing the art of chiropractic for over 10 years and brings his skills to the downtown Gresham, OR area focusing on achieving and maintaining the innate lifestyle...