Pain can really be a pain in the…you know what. It keeps us from our favorite activities. It makes us irritable. It’s like an inescapable tiny man torturing us throughout our lives. So where does pain come from?
Joints can be damaged quickly as in a whiplash, or slowly, as in poor posture. Just like when we get a cut or bruise, the damaged cells release chemicals. These chemicals:
- 1. Cause swelling to rush blood to the area.
- 2. Signal the immune system to clean up debris.
- 3. Activate scar tissue cells to “patch-up” the damage.
- 4. Turn on pain nerve endings to alert the brain.
Once the brain gets the message, you feel “pain”. Your brain goes into “fight or flight” mode; a built in mechanism assuming you’re under attack! More on that another time.
Your brain can also spasm the muscles around the joint in order to protect it from further damage while it heals.
In a newer injury, this process of healing can last 72 hours up to one week. Over the next couple of weeks, rigid scar tissue will bind up the injury site like a drywall repair. After the scar is formed, it is unorganized like a bowl of spaghetti. Over the course of about 1 year, how the scar gets re-organized will determine the likelihood of recurrent pain and the longevity of the joint.
Chiropractic techniques succeed by providing natural pain relief by facilitating this process. Restoring joint motion turns down the pain signal, tells the brain to relax the muscles, increases circulation and ensures a quality scar formation that will be more durable and functional.
IF you have questions regarding low back or neck pain call our office at 623-587-7463 or check us out online.
Dr. Aaron L. Wiegand, DC