Chiropractic Care: Then and Now

The story goes a little like this: D.D. Palmer was a grocer with an interest in metaphysics, phrenology, and spiritualism. Harvey Lillard was a janitor with damaged hearing. Palmer did an adjustment on Lillard’s neck and Lillard’s hearing returned. Thus was the chiropractic practice born in the U.S.

Research shows the roots of stretch back even farther into history. Writing from China (2700 B.C.) and Greece (1500 B.C.) spinal manipulation as a method for relieving lower back pain. The ancient Greek physician Hippocrates published texts illuminating the importance of chiropractic care. Along with people like Palmer, these men were pioneers in the field of non-invasive care for a variety of ailments.

While early chiropractors believed spinal blockages of essential life force by small misalignments of the spine, today’s chiropractic specialists focus more on disorders within the musculoskeletal system. Chiropractic care is used to treat everything from lower back pain to headaches to inner ear inflammation. Chiropractic care is recognized by the World Health Organization (WHO) and is recognized and licensed by all fifty U.S. states. Many hospital have on-site chiropractors available to care for patients.

From its shadowy beginnings to its current-day acceptance, chiropractic practice has grown to be a well-respected field, the third-largest group of health care providers in the nation, after physicians and dentists. Millions of people go to chiropractors each year from treatment of a whole range of symptoms, from lower back pain to headaches. The field continues to grow as it takes advantage of new scientific knowledge and techniques. The world of chiropractic care seems set to help provide a bright and healthy future for millions of people.


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