Hello! Thought that it’s time to write a bit more about naprapathic treatment techniques. This time I’ll dive in to the subject of joint manipulation. Manipulation is a treatment modality to improve the mobility of joints if there is found to be a movement restriction or reduced mobility in a certain joint. Basically you can manipulate any joint in the body but most often at naprapaths practice the area of possible manipulative act will be the spine. As naprapaths we are specialized to treat the spine with manipulation.
Let’s just clear one thing for the start. There is versatile terminology around manipulation. For example in the US manipulation could mean anything from soft tissue treatment to high-velocity-short-amplitude thrust technique. Here in Europe manipulation equals mostly to a technique that utilizes the high velocity amplitude thrust. This means that a skilled professional gives a quick and short impulse to the patient’s joint that is under treatment. This is the treatment modality that I’m addressing in this post.
So what happens during this bizarre sounding act? Basically the naprapath just takes a certain joint in the back to the end range of movement and then gives a quick and short impulse. Often there can be heard this cracking kind of sound and this is completely normal. Nothing to be afraid of. The sound comes from the sound when the pressure inside the joint lowers very quickly during the impulse. It’s the same phenomenon when you have for example an suction cap in a window and you pull it away and you hear that certain kind sound while doing that.
Let’s clear another thing. The absence of the cracking sound doesn’t mean that the manipulation didn’t succeed. So no worries about that. Many people have the misconception that there has to be that cracking sound but I’m happy to tell you that even if there’s no cracking sound it doesn’t mean that nothing happened.
Is manipulation dangerous? No it isn’t if the person performing manipulation has an appropriate education and training and knows the contraindications to manipulation. There are certain contraindications to manipulation. Contraindication means that there is something that prevents the performance of manipulation. For example advanced osteoporotic condition is contraindication to manipulation. Most often manipulation is very safe and an effective treatment modality to back problems in trained hands and skillful diagnostics. There has been reported few complications after cervical spine manipulation but nowadays the naprapaths are trained to carefully evaluate when manipulation is safe to perform so as a patient you can trust that you’re safety is priority number one. Naprapaths always ask the patient whether it’s okay to manipulate their spine and the patient is always able to refuse if they don’t wish their joints to be manipulated.
So why manipulate? In scientific research manipulation has been found to be equally effective treatment to sub-acute (duration 6-12 weeks) low back pain as the regular treatment by physician and medication. When you come to an appointment the naprapath carefully examines the mobility of your joints and if there is to be found a painful movement or restriction in certain direction of movement then the naprapath might treat that area with manipulation. Pain is most often reduced after manipulation and also the joint mobility usually improves immediately after.
So that’s about it. I hope this article explains understandably what manipulation is and helps you guys to know more about naprapathic treatment. If any questions come into your mind just make sure to comment. Thank you for reading!
Have a great day!
Peace & Love!