Have you asked yourself, or Google, if chiropractic can help with asthma? And, if chiropractic can help with asthma how can that happen? Those are good questions whether or not you were asking them.
Let’s explore a bit about asthma and how chiropractic can be incredibly effective helping relieve asthma.
Chiropractic Works with the Nervous System
People naturally associate chiropractic with the back or the spine. While chiropractors work on the spine the reason might surprise you. The real focus of chiropractic is the nervous system. Chiropractic is focused on locating and correcting sources of nervous system interference.
Why is that important? Because the nervous system is the master control system of the body. Nothing happens in the body without the coordination and control of the nervous system.
The spine happens to be the area most prone to interference and the easiest access to influence the nervous system.
The Autonomic Nervous System
The Autonomic Nervous System (ANS) is the part of the nervous system that controls most body functions outside of your conscious awareness. I like to think of it as ‘automatic’.
It has 2 complementary divisions:
1. Sympathetic “fight or flight” System: this is the part that is tasked with survival. When stimulated it produces responses such as:
- Increased heart rate and blood pressure
- Increased muscle tension
- Decreased digestion
- Increased inflammation
2. Vagus Nerve of the Parasympathetic System: this division is the foundation of wellness responsible for:
- Lowered heart rate
- Quality sleep
- Healthy immune response
- Healthy digestion
- Lowered inflammation
Asthma and the Autonomic Nervous System
Asthma is associated with an imbalance in the Autonomic Nervous System. The medical treatment is to use a steroid inhaler to help dilate the airways in the lungs. What if we could balance the Autonomic Nervous System without drugs?
Balancing the Autonomic System is a primary goal of corrective chiropractic care since the ANS is key to the expression of health. A review of the more common degenerative illnesses reveals they all have an ANS imbalance in common:
- Digestion disorders: GERD, ulcers, inflammatory bowel disease
- Chronic inflammation
We live in a world that is full of triggers that activate our Sympathetic Nervous System. This creates an imbalance in the ANS that manifests as a wide range of illness. Health is dependent on a healthy ANS.
3 Ways Chiropractic Can Help Asthma
Corrective and balancing chiropractic seeks to return the body to a state of balance where the nervous system can do what it does best…heal and maintain optimum health. When it comes to asthma there are a few critical areas to balance to help overcome asthma.
It is important to emphasize here that the results you get with any “tool” or “strategy” are dependent on both the intent and application of that tool or strategy. This is especially true of chiropractic. When chiropractic is applied with the goal of simply relieving pain it fails to accomplish much more significant benefits such as improvement of asthma.
The following 3 ways of how chiropractic can benefit asthma apply to a chiropractic program focused on correction and balancing.
- Upper Cervical Care: the very top of the cervical spine (neck) is home to the brainstem and the area where the autonomic nervous system (Vagus Nerve and Sympathetic System) leave the skull. The Occiput (base of skull), Atlas (C1), and Axis (C2) are the most vulnerable places for tension and interference to the autonomic system.
The skull, C1, and C2 must be in alignment and freely movable to minimize any tension to the Vagus Nerve and Sympathetic System. This is the most critical area because if there is interference here it doesn’t matter what else is done it will have less of an impact.
- Pelvis: the pelvis happens to be the area where the spinal cord is anchored to the spine. It is attached at the base of the skull and 2 places in the neck but is more freely movable until it reaches the tailbone (sacrum). Misalignment (subluxation) and loss of motion tends to have the effect of suppressing Vagus Nerve activity.
This is also the foundation of the spine and imbalance here causes imbalance all the way up to the base of the skull, putting adverse tension onto the entire nervous system.
- Mid and Lower Back: the thoracic and lumbar spine has a more intimate relationship with the Sympathetic Nervous System. Misalignment and loss of motion of the thoracic spine, lumbar spine, and ribs has a tendency to irritate the sympathetic system.
Conditions like asthma always exist in the presence of nervous system irritation and interference. When we lessen or correct this interference the body has the opportunity to heal and return to a state of greater balance. This is almost always accompanied by an improvement or even resolution of the condition.
It is important to remember that all healing processes take time. First, we must remove interference. Then we must maintain the body in a state of balance so that the body may heal. Any recurrence of interference during this process will interfere with the healing process.
Bill Berkowitz, DC
Bringing more than 3 decades of practice experience, Dr. Bill Berkowitz focuses on balancing and corrective care, applying his expertise to provide patients with predictable, repeatable and measurable results.
Dr. Bill consistently strives to enhance the well-being of his patients by addressing the root imbalances of their problems and promoting optimal balance, alignment, and function of the spine and nervous system.
Bill’s wealth of knowledge and experience has allowed him to develop a nuanced understanding of the human body and its intricate connections. With each adjustment, he supports the body in returning to a state of balance that goes beyond mere symptom relief, focusing instead on long-term correction for his patients’ well-being.
Make sure to subscribe to Dr Berkowitz’s social media pages where he regularly posts tips, insights and valuable information.
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