Chiropractic Treatment for MS
Chiropractic therapy has been used for decades for a variety of health issues, and while many people have experienced great health benefits, there is little evidence that chiropractic adjustments can alter the course of a disease. However, research has suggested that chiropractic care may be able to relieve some MS discomfort, and in very special cases, could help halt or reverse MS progression.
Learn about what chiropractic therapy can do, what it can’t do, and how to decide it it’s the right choice for you.
How Can Chiropractic Treat MS?
Although there has been some research in the field, there is little irrefutable evidence that chiropractic therapy can relieve the pain and discomfort of MS. On the other hand, spinal manipulation can have quick and powerful effects on the body, and it may be worth considering if there’s a place for chiropractic in your MS management.
- Disease control – MS patients who have experienced head or neck trauma (such as whiplash) may suffer from subluxation of the spine – that is, a misalignment of the vertebrae in the neck region. When the cervical spine is out of alignment, nerve pathways can be compromised. Since MS is a nervous system disorder, these nerve pathways play a role in MS progression and symptom flares. It follows that realigning the spine and spinal cord could improve nerve function, relieve MS symptoms, and perhaps even affect the progression of the disease.
- Symptom relief: Although there have been few clinical trials for chiropractic therapy in MS treatment, some patients have noticed a decrease in pain (especially in the lower back), and report less fatigue, less spasticity, and better range of motion. However, MS symptoms are tied to neurological loss, and chiropractors cannot reverse that with manual manipulation. What they can do is help you better manage the effects of MS by correcting your gait, improving muscle motion, and relieving compacted areas. The aim is to restore comfort and mobility by restoring balance and strength.
It’s important to remember that MS is a complicated disease that likely involves a strong genetic component. While neck trauma may spark symptoms, it cannot be blamed for the disease itself. In turn, most experts agree that chiropractic therapy should not replace medication in your MS treatment plan.
Risks and Concerns with Chiropractic Therapy
The risks of chiropractic therapy have been cause for debate over the years, and when it come to a chronic neurological illness, they certainly can’t be ignored. Although advocates ensure that chiropractic is safe for most people, it’s important to weigh the side effects and risk of complications against the potential benefits before deciding on treatment:
- Adjustments can bring new discomforts. The hope is that spinal realignment will eradicate back pain, tingling and muscle fatigue, but some patients have reported sore muscles, more fatigue and headaches after their spinal adjustment.