Whenever any of us face problems in life we usually have two ways to address the issue, we can either patch or fix the problem. Although they might sound similar, patching and fixing are two very different options. Patching the problem is a short term solution, we try to find something that will help the problem now, without much thought of the future. Fixing the problem is a long term solution, it doesn’t involve just addressing the problem now, but also makes sure that we don’t have to worry about the problem again in the future.
Chiropractic care is no different than any other problem we face in life. When we start to feel pain, chiropractic can offer two options, to to either patch or fix the problem. I discuss both of the options in detail with a patient before I begin treatment, as I feel it is essential that every patient has all of the information necessary to make the best decision with regards to the care.
When we begin to feel pain, it is very easy to get in the mind set that thinks, “I’m hurt, all I care about is feeling better!” This is something, as a chiropractor, I see in patients every day. My goal is to try to get them out of this mind set and try to get them to focus on their health long term. Yes, I can make them feel better relatively quickly, but unless they are committed to fixing the problem, it is going to keep coming back over and over again.
If the engine in your car began to leak, you could patch the problem by just pouring more oil into the engine. However, that oil will just leak out, and you are left with having to consistently refill the engine with oil. Using chiropractic to just get out of pain is a similar situation, the pain will eventually keep coming back.
In chiropractic cases, the patient’s pain is caused by either a bone being out of position and putting pressure on a nerve, or a joint being stuck and not moving properly. These are examples of what chiropractors call subluxations. Once the pressure is removed from the nerve, or the joint starts moving again, patients start to get pain relief. However, the vertebrae tends to shift back out of position, and joints lock up again over time, thus the pain comes back. This is why chiropractors take time to ensure that the bone stays in the proper position, so that the pain doesn’t come back.
So, fixing the problem for a chiropractor is like plugging a leak in an engine instead of just constantly refilling the oil.
The decision to either patch or fix the problem is always yours. Whether you are looking for a short term solution to get you through the week, or a long term solution that will benefit you for the rest of your life, chiropractic can help.