Adjustments, or manipulation as they’re sometimes referred to is the minor movement of joints in the body, most often the spine. The objective of this movement is to restore motion and improve alignment of the affected joint.
When vertebrae become misaligned, their movement is impaired and that loss of movement affects the function and health of the surrounding tissues. Misalignment can cause joint irritation, muscular responses such as spasms, nerve irritation, swelling, and pain. Long term misalignment causes the joints to wear out quicker, and allows the body to compensate elsewhere for the movement loss, often leading to more widespread joint, muscle, and nerve involvement.
An adjustment is often a pressure from the chiropractor utilizing the hands or an instrument to move a vertebrae or other joint back toward a normal position. This happens with a quick movement and is often without discomfort. You may hear a noise that sounds like you’re cracking your knuckles referred to as joint cavitation. The origin of this sound is open to debate, but is likely due to the equalization of fluid pressure within the joint itself.
Overall, adjustments are an excellent way to keep the body functioning at its highest level. When the body is in alignment, it is able to respond and perform as it was designed to.