Chiropractic adjustment is the foundation of chiropractic care. The doctor will check the spine for areas that are not moving correctly. An adjustment will be performed to allow for movement of that spinal segment, decreasing inflammation and taking irritation off those joints and the nervous system. This allows for proper function and healing of the patient because the spine can move like it was designed, and the nervous system can better send and receive messages from the brain to the rest of the body. Chiropractic adjustments are safe for every age, from infants to the elderly, and are used to help patients heal better and to function at their highest potential.

Here are some of the ways that a Doctor of Chiropractic can perform an adjustment:

  • Diversified: This is a widely used type of chiropractic manipulation/adjustment that includes most of the procedures taught at chiropractic schools. This technique is the most commonly used of all chiropractic techniques and is the one probably most familiar to patients. The Diversified manipulation/adjustment entails a high-velocity, low-amplitude thrust that usually results in a cavitation of a joint (quick, shallow thrusts that cause the popping noise often associated with a chiropractic manipulation/adjustment). 
  • Thompson: This is a specific chiropractic method and is a variation of the Diversified technique that uses a special table with several segments called drop pieces. These segments can be cocked up a fraction of an inch, so when the thrust is delivered, the table will drop this fraction of an inch. The object of the drop is to distract (open) the joint during the adjustment. The drop pieces assists the thrust, while minimizing the force required for the adjustment. Cavitation of the joint may or may not occur
  • Instrument Assisted: Instrument adjusting techniques are a gentle way of adjusting the spine and surrounding joints for those patients that prefer not to be manually adjusted or individuals in which manual techniques may be unsafe (i.e. osteoporosis, disc injuries, severe degeneration, arthritis etc). Multiple quick impulses are applied over the joints of the spine to restore movement and relieve tension. Instruments utilized in our clinic include the Arthrostim and the Chiropractic Adjusting Tool (CAT).
  • Gonstead technique: This is a specific chiropractic technique that is distinct from Diversified technique because it focuses primarily on P-A adjusting, rather than on rotary adjusting, but is still done by hand, and usually results in joint cavitation. X-ray analysis, palpation, and temperature gradient studies may be used in clinical decision-making (i.e. what segment(s) to manipulate/adjust).
  • Extremity Manipulation/Adjusting: This is the application of chiropractic manipulation/adjustment to joints other than those of the spine (i.e. shoulder, elbow, wrist/hand/finger, hip, knee, ankle/foot/toe). Examples of conditions treated by extremity manipulation/adjustment: carpal tunnel syndrome, gait, or posture-related problems.
  • Flexion/Distraction: This technique utilizes a specific table to assist in the adjustment where the chiropractor maintains correctional forces throughout the spine. This technique is particularly successful in the treatment of disc related issues as well as maintaining joint health.
  • Myofascial Release: This is a specific muscle release technique to break down trigger points, scar tissue, and relieve muscle tension in order to return the condition of the muscle back to a relaxed state.