As a patient of a medical professional, it’s not unreasonable to want to confirm that they are well-educated. After all, you’re entrusting them with your health and safety. Chiropractic care is considered a form of alternative medicine, as it focuses primarily on the spine and how it connects to the rest of the body. That being said, the learning curve is a bit different than it might be for nurses, doctors, or surgeons. Let’s take a look at the content and general timeline of education and other formal training necessary to receive a chiropractic license in 2022.

First things first, you must graduate high school and enroll in a university to complete your undergraduate studies in an appropriate field (e.g., biology, kinesiology, etc.). Only after those prerequisites have been completed can you begin working towards a medical degree. Enrolling in the Doctor of Chiropractic program is the beginning of several years of hard work and training. This will give the student a more holistic view of the human body and how the systems work together, a core component of chiropractic care. The program itself can take up to five years, and graduation requires a minimum of 4,200 hours of instruction. Even after all that, the student’s job is not yet complete. They must first pass a series of exams provided by the National Board of Chiropractic Examiners. Only then will they be granted permission to secure a license in their state of practice and become fully-fledged chiropractors.

So, what kinds of things are students learning as they make their way through the program? At the undergraduate level, students will be exposed to disciplines such as biology, anatomy, physiology, and other similar courses that will give them a better understanding of the basic functions of the human body. The next stage involves learning the complexities of patient-physician interaction, including physicals and diagnoses, as well as the business side of managing a practice. Finally, the student will secure a series of internships to get hands-on experience alongside a professional in the field. After all this, they can put their knowledge to good use and demonstrate their accomplishments on the NBCE exams.

To summarize, if you’re concerned about the competence of your local chiropractor, don’t be. All chiropractors go through a rigorous process of eduction, training, and examination. Those who have been awarded licensure are the ones who have spent years getting to where they are now. If you’re still hesitant, make an appointment to get to know the physician and get a preliminary examination. Looking for a good chiropractor in your area? We would love to have you here at Wirth Chiropractic. Contact us to schedule an appointment, or drop by our offices in Greenville, NC today!

The term “evidence-based practice” is thrown around quite a bit, especially in the field of chiropractic. If you’ve been to a chiropractor or are currently searching for one, perhaps you’ve heard the phrase advertised as a positive aspect and a benefit to the patient. But more than likely, this phrase means nothing to you. What exactly does it mean to be an evidence-based practice? It must be a good thing, but what’s so great about it, and why should you care? Let’s answer some of these questions now.

Evidence-based practice (EBP) represents an entirely holistic portrait of what healthcare can look like. The patient is of utmost priority, and their needs and values are taken into consideration to create an experience that is tailored to the person. Physicians in an EBP accomplish this by keeping up with the latest evidence-based research in their field (in this case, chiropractic). This requires a great deal of flexibility, constantly re-evaluating and adjusting their practice to keep up with the times. In other words, EBP chiropractors are cutting edge.

So, what are some of the tangible advantages that come with an EBP? For one thing, you as the patient can rest assured that your physician is working hard to make sure they are using all the latest techniques and strategies to help you accomplish your wellness goals. This ensures a healthy patient-physician relationship. When both of you are doing everything in your power to work toward a common goal, you know that you have somebody to rely on for advice and assistance.

Furthermore, attending an EBP means that your treatment will be tailored to you specifically. An EBP chiropractic center will take into account your age, symptoms, and overall health condition. Using this data, they can tailor the treatments and therapies so that you are not engaging in anything that may be unnecessary or harmful. Speaking of unnecessary and harmful, an EBP ensures that you will not be prematurely directed to anything overly permanent, intrusive, or costly, such as surgery.

So, why should you care about an EBP as a patient? Take a look at the facts and see for yourself. An EBP puts you at the forefront of medical technology and research, while also accounting for your individual needs. Sounds like a win-win! If you’re in need of a chiropractor, we invite you to join us here at Wirth Chiropractic. Contact us and find relief today!

Massage...some may think of it as just a luxury service for vacationers, but it is quite an effective tool for musculoskeletal health. It works very well in tandem with chiropractic care, in that it promotes healing in the muscles and circulation in the lymphatics, all of which surround the skeletal structures that are adjusted during chiropractic visits. Muscles may be sore from a specific injury or tight after prolonged and repetitive use. In either case, the therapist will work toward restoration of the tissues and work toward getting the muscles back in good working order. If the patient goes to a massage therapy session before a scheduled chiropractic adjustment, the chiropractor may have an easier time putting the vertebrae back into alignment without having to deal with the contracting of tight muscle tissues, which pull at the bones.  

 

In a typical massage therapy visit, the therapist will ask if there are any acute concerns. The patient may wish to have a specific area worked on, or the entire body. There will be a special table that enables the patient to comfortably lie either face up or face down. The atmosphere will typically lend itself to relaxation with amenities such as low lighting and soft music. The goal is to have the patient release tension and allow the therapist to penetrate the inner tissues of each muscle area. Western countries typically utilize what is called Swedish or classical massage. It has shown excellent results with the promotion of blood circulation and lymphatic flow, both of which help built-up toxins exit the muscles. Many therapists will recommend drinking water immediately after the visit as well to further flush those toxins out of the body.

 

Massage therapy can have incredible mental benefits as well. With the lowering of the blood pressure and the lessening of tension, tightness and soreness, the brain will then release dopamine and serotonin. With those elevated levels comes a greater sense of wellbeing and a decrease in irritability and low mood. And with relaxation comes a greater amount of oxygen intake and lower cortisol levels. 

 

If you are interested in adding massage therapy to your regimen to further maintain your musculoskeletal health, talk with your chiropractor about how this may benefit you. The chiropractor and the massage therapist can recommend the best schedule of frequency and duration of visits and can make a plan of care for you. They may additionally recommend a stretching routine that will help prolong the effects of the therapies and keep the soft tissues loose.  

The term “ergonomics” refers to the study of one’s efficiency in the workplace, particularly for the purpose of improving and streamlining the process. Good ergonomics is highly valued, if not sometimes overlooked. Chiropractors highly recommend looking for small ways to improve your daily work tasks. This will help preserve the integrity of your spine, as well as the rest of your body.

Whether you sit in an office cubicle all day or your job requires more manual labor, there are plenty of ways to ensure that your work will not cause undue harm to your body. Below are a few tips to consider improving your workplace ergonomics.

  • For those that sit at a desk for long periods of time, a proper chair is one of the most important investments you can make. Office chairs come in a wide variety of shapes, sizes, and heights, and many are adjustable to better accommodate its occupant. It’s crucial that you select a chair that will support your back and shoulders. You should strive to maintain good posture at all times, especially for such extended periods of time.
  • Beyond just your chair, your workstation should be organized with ergonomics in mind. Your computer monitor, keyboard, mouse, and trackpad, as well as pens, pencils, documents, and other supplies, should be kept within reach. Your body should not have to repeatedly strain to reach anything. This repetition could ultimately cause serious damage to your fingers, hands, arms, shoulders, and back.
  • In a similar vein, try to set your computer screen as close to eye level as possible. This will minimize any stress on your neck muscles and vertebrae. If possible, consider investing in a standing desk. This will make it easier to walk, stretch, and keep your body in its natural position.
  • For those who perform manual labor, your body is especially prone to injury. Take care of yourself by following precautions and practicing proper techniques. For example, rather than bending at the waist to pick something up, bend your knees and lift with your legs. This will help preserve the muscles in your back from damage.

Workplace ergonomics may not be as highly enforced as certain other procedures and guidelines, but it’s important to recognize where your work can be streamlined for your own health and safety. If you’re feeling the effects of improper ergonomic practices, stop by Wirth Chiropractic. We would love to assist you on your path to holistic wellness. Call our offices and make an appointment today!

Going to a chiropractor can often feel like your biannual visit to the dentist’s office. Much like your teeth can stain and acquire a buildup of plaque, your spine shifts and torques with use (or lack thereof). Neither are the fault of the person. In fact, they both happen naturally over extended periods.

Both require a certain level of maintenance to keep your body running smoothly and efficiently. Just like the health of your teeth depends on how frequently you brush and floss, your spine is also affected by various factors, both internally and externally. Let’s take a look at a few of these now.

  1. First and perhaps most obviously, your chiropractic schedule will have a prominent impact on your health and the recovery of your spine. You should definitely discuss your treatment with a chiropractor and set a schedule that will provide maximal results. This is especially important near the beginning of your treatment, as new patients require frequent consistency to properly begin the correction process.
  2. Your lifestyle is another factor to keep in mind. Are you an active individual with a physically taxing job? Or do you live a more sedentary lifestyle, sitting behind a desk at an office job? Do you walk, run, swim, climb, or otherwise workout on a regular basis? These can all have significant effect on your spine. Other factors include the quality of your diet, as well as the amount of sleep you get each night.
  3. It’s no secret that our bodies’ ability to shift and adapt gradually decreases as we get older. It’s certainly not impossible, but it can make the correction and healing process more difficult. Similarly, your overall health condition can be a major factor in the recovery process when it comes to chiropractic care. Age and health often go hand in hand. Be sure to provide your chiropractor with all the necessary details so they know how best to treat you.

Like going to the dentist or the doctor’s office for a check-up, it’s most important that you keep a consistent schedule for chiropractic adjustments. Don’t wait until you’re in unbearable pain to begin treatment. While chiropractic can be about correction and recovery, it’s also about prevention. Make a choice today to put your health first, and start out on the path to full recovery. If you’re looking for a chiropractic office to call home, we would love to have you here at Wirth Chiropractic. Visit our main website and contact us to make an appointment!

We all know that heating packs and cold compresses or ice packs can be tremendously useful when we sustain an injury. From the bumps and bruises of childhood to the body aches and pains as we get older, the benefits of temperature therapy are instilled in us throughout our lives. It’s such a simple method, but it works! Unfortunately, it can be difficult to know (and remember) when to use which method. What does the hot do that the cold cannot, and vice versa? When should I use them? And what types of injuries will it alleviate? Let’s analyze these and other questions a bit further.

Heat

Heat is best used when the affected area needs to relax. This includes muscles, tendons, and ligaments that have tightened or shortened. Heat can widen the blood vessels, increasing blood flow to the site of application. This will release tension and stiffness, helping the body to relax and stretch. You may also consider applying heat after a chiropractic adjustment to decrease the chance of stiffness and soreness later that day or the next day. It’s been found that humid heat is the best for this type of therapy, so access to a steam room, hot tub, or even a hot shower will greatly improve your results.

It’s important that the application is warm/hot, but be careful not to burn yourself! You should also never apply heat to inflammations, as that could make the injury worse.

Cold

Ice packs or cold compresses are best used on inflamed areas. The cool temperature will decrease blood flow to the site of inflammation, allowing your body time to recoup. Cold application can also slow the progression of any damage to that part of your body while keeping your pain level at a minimum. It’s not always necessary to apply ice directly to the skin, as that can be severely uncomfortable, even painful. As long as the cold can reach the body and is able to numb the site of inflammation, then you could use a washcloth or paper towel to wrap it.

Know Your Temperatures

Sometimes, aches and pains can benefit from a back-and-forth therapy: hot application, then cold application, then back again, until the pain subsides. If you’re experiencing back or neck pain not directly related to a recent severe injury, discuss it with your chiropractor. They would be glad to provide their professional opinion and help you find comfort. Looking for a chiropractor to call home? Contact Wirth Chiropractic and book an appointment today!

Whether through in-person interactions or via online research, you may have noticed the term “subluxation” being thrown around quite a bit. It’s commonly used in reference to chiropractic treatment or maladies of the spine and, by extension, the nervous system. But we often take this knowledge for granted, and sometimes we forget that not everyone is well-versed in the glossary of a chiropractic physician. What does the term subluxation actually mean? How is it officially defined? And perhaps most importantly, what does it mean for you, and how can it be treated? Let’s take a look at some of these questions now.

First of all, how can “subluxation” be defined? A subluxation is just a fancy term for a misaligned vertebra. The vertebrae are the bones that make up your spine. They are surrounded by muscles, nerves, and tissue, and they fit together like building blocks. This modularity allows your spine the flexibility to bend, twist, and move. But sometimes, repetitive movement or violent trauma can shift a vertebra from its normal position. Whether it’s bulging outward or twisted at an angle, this unnaturally-shifted state is known as subluxation.

So what does this mean for you? Why should you care if your spine is subluxated? A subluxated vertebra can lead to many health problems. When your spine is misaligned, your nervous system is unable to function with maximum efficiency. Your nervous system is in charge of motor controls, sensations, and involuntary bodily processes. If your nervous system is impeded, then one or all of these processes may suffer as a result. Subluxation can lead to back pain, neck pain, headaches, dizziness, brain fog, and even digestive issues. In other words, subluxation needs to be corrected as soon as possible.

In order to experience a full quality of life, the chiropractor can identify and correct any subluxated vertebrae. How do they do it? Chiropractors use hyper-concentrated, non-intrusive spinal adjustments to manipulate the vertebrae and guide them back into their correct positions. Over time, you will begin to see a gradual improvement in your posture, as well as a decrease in pain, headaches, and other issues related to the nervous system.

If you are experiencing any kind of chronic pain or discomfort, make an appointment with your local chiropractor. You may have a subluxated vertebra causing a pinched nerve. If you’re in the Greenville area, consider making Wirth Chiropractic your physician of choice. Find our contact information on our website and schedule your free consultation today!

Gravity is one of the greatest and strongest forces known to mankind. Thanks to Newton and his apple tree, we now recognize that all things on earth are pulled toward the ground at a constant velocity. It keeps you, your friends, your family, your home, and all your possessions grounded without fear of them floating off into the sky. You can defy gravity with a jump, but it always wins in the end.

Simply put, gravity is a universal constant. It applies to everyone across the earth at all times. Have you ever considered what this might do to your body? Gravity, as well as atmospheric pressure, is putting a great deal of stress on your body. Whether sitting, walking, running, or lying down, the force of gravity is ever present. How does this affect your bones, your joints, and your organs?

The harsh reality is that gravity does indeed have a significant effect on your body. Consider the patients who go to their chiropractor regularly. In most cases, those people are not doing anything particularly damaging or otherwise abnormal that might cause their spine to shift. But the fact is that these patients will always have some form of vertebral shift, whether major subluxation or minor misalignment.

What happens is gravity pushes and pulls on your body at all times, regardless of what you’re doing. Your spine is constructed of a series of vertebrae and cartilaginous intervertebral discs. Fused between each vertebra in the spine, the intervertebral discs give your spine its flexibility while also providing a sort of cushioned shock absorber. This helps to counteract the natural effects of gravity, as well as protect against any violent impacts that may otherwise shatter the vertebrae.

Even so, the relentless pull of gravity causes bones to shift. This, in turn, may lead to subluxation and even herniated discs, both of which cause pinched nerves. Classic symptoms include headaches, back pain, tiredness, and lack of focus. If left unchecked, gravity will continue to ravage your body and your spine will continue to degenerate.

So don’t let gravity win! Spinal health is an important part of overall health. Make an appointment with the nearest chiropractor and get started on the path to wellness. If you happen to live in the area, Wirth Chiropractic would be more than willing to see that your spine is given the care it deserves. Stop by our offices in Greenville, NC, or contact us and make an appointment today!

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