Quite often a client will say something like “I think it’s just a pulled muscle” or “I can’t tell if it’s a bone out or just a tight muscle” when referring to the source of their pain.
The thing that is always important to remember is this: Pain ALWAYS comes from the NERVE SYSTEM.
This is because the Nerve System is what your body uses to send pain signals to the brain to tell you there’s a problem. Chiropractic works to decrease pain and improve your body’s function because it removes irritation from the nerve system.
Whether a bone is out of place or a muscular problem is causing irritation to a nerve is kind of like asking whether the chicken or the egg came first…
On one hand, a bone out of alignment can cause the muscles around it to protect the area by going into spasm, becoming tight, or ‘splinting’.
On the other hand, a tight muscle can potentially pull a bone out of alignment as well..
So which is it? Is it a spine problem or a muscle problem?
Can poor posture at a desk job all day create tight upper back muscles that pull your upper spine out of alignment? Absolutely! In this case does your spine still need to be adjusted back into alignment? Absolutely!
Would it benefit you to improve your posture and strengthen the muscles of your upper back to maintain proper spinal alignment, nerve system health, and decrease muscle tension and pain? Absolutely!
Now is it possible to just have tight sore muscles that are creating pain and have no need to be adjusted? Absolutely! And your chiropractor should be able to tell you if this is the case.
Finally, is it possible to not feel ANY muscular pain but still need to have your spine aligned? YES! This is why it’s a good idea to get your spine checked periodically, and again, your chiropractor will be able to know if you need an adjustment or not.
Our bodies are complex and interconnected, and rarely is a problem ‘just’ a bone or ‘just’ a muscle. Chiropractic adjustments and spinal checkups are a way to help maintain your overall health while respecting the fact that your body is connected and that when health issues arise there may be more happening under the surface than it seems.