What do Chiropractors do exactly?

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It Starts with You

                Like most people, your body normally has the amazing ability to heal itself given the right circumstances. Proper nutrition, exercise, healthy habits, and a spine that is functioning ideally all work together to enable this self healing process and prevent all types of chronic disease, improve fitness, and allow your body to perform at its very best. It is at this level that the self healing properties of your body are fully released allowing your immune system to keep chronic disease in check.

                Of course this makes sense to us. After all, if you eat a sensible healthy diet combined with routine exercise you reap huge benefits. Maintaining an ideal weight and a fit body helps avoid diabetes, cardiovascular disease, arthritis, cancer, and many more chronic diseases. However, the reality is that chronic diseases are all around us. Obesity is rampant not only in adults but also now in children. Unfortunately it seems our health care system is just not doing much to help.

                Some say that our health care system has let us down. They say that we spend twice as much on health care as any industrial country yet we rank 42nd in life expectancy worldwide. The fact is that our health care system is designed to treat sickness and disease, not promote health. The uncontrollable cost of health care is being driven by the relentless increase in chronic illness and disease and so we say the health care system has let us down. But have we placed the blame on the wrong door step? If we sit on our couches and eat foods that nurture inflammation in our bodies and eat genetically modified foods laced with toxic herbicides and pesticides is it no wonder why we develop chronic diseases as we age?

                The fact is that in order to bring down the exorbitant costs we will have to address these chronic diseases. Perhaps the best way to do that is to promote wellness and health. If you are not already, you need to eat a healthy diet, pay a bit more for organic foods, exercise far more, and maintain your spine. This sort of reform, people taking responsibility for their own wellness, is just not happening much on its own but here and in Fairfax chiropractic offices all across the country we are working toward that very reform – to promote health rather than only treat disease. As the president of National University wrote, “It’s impossible to treat people into health; at best, you can sometimes treat them out of disease.”

             If you been following my blog posts, you know that I am very passionate about preventative health care and Chiropractic wellness in general. As you know my name is Dr. Shirine Hegazi and if you live in Fairfax, Vienna, Falls Church or Merrifield you can watch our practice video or visit the Treatments page on our website to learn about exactly what a Chiropractor does. To get a preliminary idea of how Chiropractors think, take a look below about the three levels of Chiropractic Care.

Level One: Pain Relief

                Those who become our patients will immediately see that we take a different approach. Most patients who come to see us (or medical doctors, in general) initially do so with a painful condition seeking relief. Very likely that is exactly why you may have visited us or maybe if you are not our patient it is why you are thinking of doing so. Of course our first goal is to get you feeling better as quickly as possible. We usually avoid saying we “treat” things but at first, like medical care, we address your condition to treat and relieve your pain. This is the first level of care, but chiropractic goes further with two additional levels.  

    Level Two: Correction

                Once we have your pain controlled and you are able to function again our next step is to try to correct or eliminate what caused your condition in the first place and  prevent it from recurring in the future. This is where we periodically check your spine and adjust it if needed to keep it functioning right and to maintain it until it is stable. Our goal is to maximize the ability of your nervous system to function and to communicate between the brain and the body through the spinal cord within the spine. We are working not only to prevent the recurrence of the condition but to insure your entire spine is functioning. At this point we are considering all your systems  and evaluating your whole body, not just the symptoms which brought you to us in the first place. One of the great aspects of Chiropractic Wellness and of this second stage is that often after the initial condition for which you sought help resolves, you might find that other health conditions improve that you did not expect.

                Maintaining chiropractic care at this second level was found to be highly effective and worthwhile in a recent study. Patients with chronic low back pain received a month of level one care until much of their pain was relieved. Half of them then continued with supportive care once every two weeks for the following nine months and they improved even more. The other half, who did not continue with the maintenance care, lost most of the relief they had gained with pain and disability levels returning to near where they started.

Level Three: Wellness Care

                The third level of chiropractic care is what we call wellness care. We offer wellness care to help you be all that you can be, to help you reach optimum health. At this point we adjust your spine not to treat any condition but to insure ideal function of the spine. Then in addition to spinal care we counsel you on nutrition, exercise, and healthy habits that prevent all manner of chronic diseases, improve fitness, and allow your body to perform at its very best. It is at this level that the self healing properties of your body are fully released with a life force that keeps chronic diseases in check.

                Ultimately many of our patients recognize that wellness care is the choice of those who seek to live to their fullest potential with health and vitality well into their old age. If you desire this kind of health, there may be no better place to start than right here with regular chiropractic care.

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Dr. Shirine Hegazi is a premier chiropractor in the Northern Virginia area, specializing in sports rehabilitation and alternative health care. Dr. Hegazi takes a scientific approach to accurately diagnose and eliminate the causes of his patients symptoms. Connect with him on Facebook, Twitter and Google+.

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