Dr. Brimhall's Health Puzzle Piece

January 28, 2008

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How Are Some Chiropractors Like Crabs?

Is the definition of Chiropractic to push on bones and hear a pop?  …or is it much more than giving patients a mere “structural aspirin?”  Is it not our duty, as Chiropractors, to identify subluxations and correct them to allow for proper function by any means that are legal, ethical and moral?  Does only one style of Chiropractic correct subluxations? 

Some would force us to follow their style of practice or report us to the State Board as illegal and unethical. They want anyone that is different to conform to their style - or else.  I have studied many forms of Chiropractic and have seen every style help patients: Gonstead, Pettibon, Toftness, BEST, Van Rump, Craniosacral, Applied Kinesiology, Activator, Instrument Adjusting, Nimmo, Basic, NET, NAET, SOT, Toggle, Upper Cervical, etc., just to name a few.
DD Palmer said that subluxations are the cause of dis-ease.  He even used magnets in his treatments.  He pushed on the spine of a janitor, Harvey Lillard, who then gained better hearing after this first Chiropractic adjustment. So, does this mean that Chiropractors are hearing doctors?  Chiropractic Neurologists are about the only DC’s that can explain the neurological pathways that make this possible.  Yet, a whole profession got its start with this event in history.  Where are the randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, cross-over studies and evidence-based research to prove that Harvey heard better as a cause of spinal correction?  Should the Chiropractic profession be dissolved if such studies do not exist?  Is it possible to “prove” electricity, or love, or how the earth stays positioned without the slightest variation, allowing the sun to rise every day and set every night and we don’t burn or freeze instantly?
If the spinal subluxation is the cause of dis-ease and its correction is the answer for improved health, then what is/are the cause(s) of the subluxation?  We all agree physical trauma can cause subluxations, but can we deny that emotional stress causes subluxations?  What about toxic poisoning, electromagnetic stress, allergies, infections, malnutrition, poor diet, etc?  What about weak muscles on one side of the body and spastic on the other?  Could ignoring the evaluation and treatment of weak muscles, fascial restrictions, emotional stress, or nutritional considerations leave many patients subluxated or cause them to re-subluxate shortly after they leave the office?  Absolutely!
Where does the Crab Story fit in to this conversation?  It is said that you never have to put a lid on a bucket of crabs because as soon as one starts to climb out, one of the other crabs will pull it back down into the bucket again.  Many in the Chiropractic profession are acting more like crabs than companionate physicians looking for answers to help suffering humanity.
Let’s look at the other side of the coin: You are not officially born if a Medical Doctor does not sign your birth certificate, and you are not officially dead until one signs your death certificate. Their license grants them authority to perform almost anything and everything they consider might help a patient.  Physical Therapists are constantly expanding their license, yet many Chiropractors are trying to control the practice of other Chiropractors and attempt to shrink-wrap the existing laws.  The patients are not complaining about the results they are experiencing.  They are thrilled about the life-changing miracles they are receiving.  Why is one Chiropractor battling against another, trying to restrict their fellow professionals’ scope of practice?
Some MD’s and insurance companies criticize Chiropractors because they say we are not confined in a tight enough box.  They want us to stay in this limiting “spine and structure” container, which does not exist for medicine or insurance companies.  They want to dictate to us what we do and how we practice, so we can be controlled.  Some of our fellow Chiropractors are following this limiting belief system to be accepted in the “Valley of the Blind.”

We live in a quantum world of light and sound, energy and motion.  If muscles move bones, we should test them for strength and range of motion.  If certain nutrition or toxins strengthen or weaken a muscle, we should note that and educate the patient on proper diet, exercise, nutrition and detoxification.  To do less than that, places us in the “Chiropractic aspirin” category where we pop and pray and hope we relieve a patient’s pain or discomfort.  If not, we must refer them for drugs or surgery.
I became a Chiropractor because Chiropractic saved my functional life.  As great as spinal adjustments are, Chiropractic is more than mechanical correction of the spine.  It is identifying and correcting the causes of the subluxation with natural means, which might include manual adjusting, instrument adjusting, nutrients, craniosacral therapy, muscle therapy, light, laser, exercise, diet, detoxification, color, sound, genetic and genomic understanding and research, etc.  Some may choose not to do this, and that is fine.  However, those of us that are willing to go the extra mile should be allowed to do so, without harassment.
I pray that we learn to support each other in this great profession and work intelligently with other professionals for the sake of humanity.
Yours in Health and Wellness,
John W Brimhall, DC and the Wellness Team



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The above statements have not been evaluated by the FDA. The nutritional information, suggestions, and research provided are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent disease and should not be used as a substitute for sound medical advice. Please see your health care professional in all matters pertaining to your physical health.