Chiropractic care begins with the philosophy that the life-giving force of the universe runs through us all, giving each of us the capacity to heal our bodies and live in optimal health. In light of this, care begins from the inside out.
Some people find the approach of chiropractic care confusing. It’s different than the mechanistic approach of Western medicine. A mechanistic approach breaks the body down into various parts or systems — the respiratory system, the nervous system, the muscular-skeletal system, and so on. It then assigns specialists to each part — pulmonologists, neurologists, orthopedists, etcetera. Within the Western model of medicine, if your wrist hurts or you get chronic headaches or your lower back is constantly in pain, you see a specialist who can address the particular system where your symptoms occur. After all, if your sink is backed up, you call a plumber, not an electrician. Likewise, to fix a broken air-conditioner in a car, a mechanic finds the malfunctioning part and replaces it. If the body is a like a house or a car, then treating ailments or injuries as isolated incidents in particular systems and responding to them with therapies such surgery or drugs may be the best path to follow.
The only problem with this approach is that the body isn’t a machine or a building. It’s a complex and integrated organism with an innate intelligence.
While a mechanistic perspective sees the body as reducible to its various parts and systems, vitalism sees the body as a dynamic whole. Each system of this whole coordinates with the others to adapt and to change, to grow and to heal. Derived from the root word vitality, which means “the power giving continuance of life, present in all living things,” a vitalistic perspective begins here.
When we heal from a small cut or a sprained ankle, we see the body’s innate healing intelligence. Diseases occur when this process is interrupted. The spin protects the central nervous system, which is essential to the body’s proper functioning and healing. When vertebrae are even slightly misaligned, the connection between the body and the brain gets disrupted. Called subluxations, misalignments in the vertebrae affect the normal operation of the nervous system and disturb the body’s innate ability to heal itself. In chiropractic care, through gentle and targeted adjustments, subluxations are removed, and the body’s natural healing abilities are restored.
Aligning with Our Body’s Innate Intelligence
Health is a dynamic expression, not an event. This is why reducing the interference in the nervous system and re-connecting my patients to their innate healing ability is primary in my care. Another way to say this is that by reconnecting the body with the brain through the removal of subluxations, I work to help patients connect with their body’s innate intelligence. When patients are in alignment, with their brains and bodies connected, healthy decisions come naturally as we listen together to their bodies’ inner wisdom.