How Chiropractic Benefits Senior Citizens
The aging process can usher in a variety of conditions and health issues that are confined (mostly) to the elderly. Chronic pain, arthritis, loss of mobility, and other issues can occur as a person get older, but senior citizens are finding that chiropractic provides some great benefits for the older demographic.
Better Range of Motion
Regular chiropractic care has been shown to increase spinal range of motion as well as in the extremities. Limited range of motion can occur due to age or inactivity – sometimes a combination of the two.
Having the ability to move easier has many great benefits. It allows seniors to more actively engage with their environment. They can get on their hands and knees to work in the garden, bend down to pick up grandchildren, and improve leisure activities like golfing. Increased range of motion is one of the most common (and appreciated!) benefits of chiropractic treatment.
Decreased Degeneration of Joints
When the spine is misaligned it can lead to other parts of the body becoming misaligned as well. This can lead to unusual and unnatural wearing of the joints. Over time, the joints can become worn down, painful, and cause difficulty in mobility and flexibility.
Chiropractic care is a very effective treatment for decreasing the degeneration of the spine and even other joints. When the body is in proper alignment it no longer has to adapt through postural compensation. This reduces stress on the spine and joints while relieving pain and restoring mobility.
Chiropractic has long been recognized for its effectiveness in providing drug free pain relief for everything from back pain to headaches to arthritis. While pain medication and anti-inflammatory drugs only suppress the symptoms, chiropractic addresses the root of the problem.
Spinal alignments and other chiropractic techniques help to relieve pain for a variety of issues, not just back and neck pain. What’s more, chiropractic does not have the undesirable, sometimes dangerous side effects that drugs can.
Overall Better Health and Wellbeing
Proper spinal alignment can greatly benefit a person’s health, wellbeing, and even their mood. It allows them to become more active so they get exercise. They sleep better and have more energy.
An aligned spine also lets them more fully engage with their family, friends, and the world. They can get out and do things they were once unable to do and when they are active and happier the entire body benefits.
Improved Coordination and Balance
The aging process can have a significant impact on a person’s balance and coordination. This can have a variety of causes including degenerative changes to the spine, typically in the neck area. Injury to this area is another culprit.
There are special receptors that reside along the cervical spine in the rear of the joints. These receptors work to send vital messages to the brain regarding coordination and balance. When the spine and especially the neck are out of alignment, it can hinder how these receptors send and receive messages to the brain. The result is a condition called loss of proprioception, or sense of body awareness.
As the condition progresses, the patient relies on vision to determine the location of their feet, legs, and other limbs. The worse it gets, the less able the patient is in compensating and can become prone to falling.
Injuries from falling are one of the most common reasons elderly people visit emergency departments each year. Chiropractic can help realign the neck and spine, allowing the messages to move much easier, thus restoring balance and coordination.
Prevents Seniors from being Confined to Nursing Homes
Seniors who are regular chiropractic patients are more likely to engage in exercise that is more strenuous. They are more active, have fewer injuries, and are basically happier and more positive.
The more active and mobile seniors are, the less likely they are to be placed in a nursing home due to medical conditions or the “typical” aging issues. Simply put, chiropractic for seniors changes the way many people look at aging – and places it in a much more positive, active light.