My 5-year old daughter is a Band-Aid junkie. If she hurts herself, she runs to our home’s medicine cabinet and grabs her favourite Dora or Hello Kitty Band-Aid which makes her ‘feel better.’
To my daughter, her Band-Aid is a cure for her problem. By putting a Band-Aid on her pain she has solved her problem. Or has she? Has putting a Band-Aid on fixed the cause of the pain or has it merely covered it up?
This example is very much the way drugs work. Drugs cover up a problem by making you feel better. It’s fine to take an anti-inflammatory or painkiller when you have a sore back or shoulder. Anti-inflammatories and painkillers are very good at what they do. But the inflammation and pain are not the actual problem. They are the end result of injury within the body and are the body’s attempt to protect the injured area. Pain causes a person to be more careful when using a certain body area to minimize further injury. If you have pain when moving your shoulder, you are less inclined to use it. Similarly, inflammation is another warning sign that an injury is present and is a chemical reaction created by your body to protect and attempt to repair it.
So although anti-inflammatories and painkillers make you feel better, they may actually hinder the healing process. If you cover up the pain you are more likely to overuse the injured area and prolong healing or increase the injury. If you take anti-inflammatories to reduce inflammation, you may be hindering the body’s natural healing response.
Chiropractic, on the other hand, is different. Chiropractic directly addresses the cause of musculoskeletal pain be it your back, shoulder or other area. Chiropractors employ drugless techniques to treat the actual injury which in turn will result in a decrease in pain and inflammation. As the cause of the pain and inflammation is fixed (the injury) the pain and inflammation will disappear. Other body processes designed to protect injured regions such as muscle stiffness and decreased range of motion will also improve as the root injury is eliminated.
This is the true power of chiropractic. We directly treat the cause of musculoskeletal pain to allow you to be your best at your job, sports and other aspects of your life.
Now if I could just get my daughter to give up her Band-Aids…
Dr. Kevin Jay
Photo Credits: DQMountaingirl