The first phase of care is the Intensive Stage. The goal is to reduce pain and swelling and reduce or eliminate current complaint such as headaches or lower back pain. The intended outcome is to STABILIZE the problem and STOP the current damage being done to the spine. The body has muscle memory so the muscle will initially try to pull the vertebra back to its previous unhealthy position. At this point adjustments can last between 24 and 48 hours therefore adjustments are scheduled more frequently. It is very important to get into an adjustment rhythm to help the body accept the new alignment. The human body loves being in rhythm. Falling asleep at the same time each night helps the body feels well rested. Working out consistently the same number of times a week the body responds the best. When the body is out of rhythm in sleep, workouts or adjustment schedules, the best outcome is not achieved.
AFTER the pain and swelling is reduced or eliminated, the next phase is the Corrective Stage. The goal of the adjustments is to RETRAIN the subluxated vertebrae and the overall curves into the correct alignment to gain more FUNCTION AND MOBILITY and help the joint become STRONGER. This will reduce the chance for an aggravation of the current issue or a new issue
Ultimately, the goal is to get to the final stage, Protective Stage, to protect the correction by allowing ligaments to REMODEL or rebuild in the correct position. Remodeling is where the ligaments, which are like rubber bands, increase their tension to protect the vertebrae new position. This creates LONG TERM stability - and prevents sliding backwards and losing the gains that have been made.
To compare the dental process to chiropractic, the Intensive Phase is similar to getting cavities filled, then the Corrective Phase is similar to getting braces to correct alignment and then the Protective State is similar to wearing a retainer after getting braces off.
Most patients begin in the Intensive Stage of care where they will be evaluated regularly and will receive recommendations moving forward. A patient may need Corrective Care or may be able to go directly into Protective Care. By the time the Initial Intensive Care Phase is completed, a patient may see some pretty incredible outcomes due to the nerves functioning at a higher level. AlignLife has had asthmatics report using inhalers less, patients with chronic fatigue reporting have more energy and even parents stating their kids are doing better in school after removing nerve pressure in their upper neck.
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