Cryotherapy vs Chiropractic


Many people can benefit from cryotherapy for a variety of different health conditions; from treating skin conditions to reducing arthritic pain. Cryotherapy can be delivered to a single area or the whole body. Cryotherapy is the use of sub zero temperatures as a therapeutic measure and has been used since the Egyptians, similarly to how the Egyptians were manipulating the spine to get people well. The Egyptians were using cryotherapy to reduce inflammation and pain associated with injury.

Types of Cryotherapy

There are a variety of different types of cryotherapy just as there are a variety of different types of chiropractic treatments. Focusing on cryotherapy there are 4 categories of treatment. Whole body cryotherapy exposes most of the person’s body to sub zero temperatures and is used for different health conditions from injuries to sleep issues. Localized cryotherapy can be performed by either a physician administering a freezing agent like liquid nitrogen or can be as simple as applying an icepack to a sprained ankle.

Physicians may use localized cryotherapy to treat skin disorders such as warts or even certain skin cancers. when a surgeon uses procedures similar to laparoscopic surgery to administer the freezing agent internally it is called interal cryotherapy. This treatment may also be used to treat some forms of cancer. Finally, cryotherapy has also been used for heart surgery typically for children. A patient is placed in a hypothermic state during open heart surgery to slow down the body processes allowing the heart to be stopped without resulting in brain damage.

Types of Chiropractic

Just like cryotherapy, there are a variety of different Chiropractic techniques. Traditional chiropractic focuses on improving range of motion, decreasing muscle spasm, as well as decreasing pain. These doctors get great results when looking to correct the above problems. NeuroStructural Chiropractic is focused on identifying structural shifts of the spine that directly causes nerve inflammation. The nerves do not just stay in the spine, they travel to every cell and organ in the body and act as the roadways for communication. When a nerve gets injured by a structural shift it will lead to nerve inflammation and secondary conditions (AKA Symptoms).  

The Science

Through science we know that the brain controls and coordinated the function of every cell and organ in the body and it uses the nerve system as the roadways for communication. If a nerve that travels down the leg is injured that person may experience sciatica, if a nerve that travels to the digestive tract is injured the person may experience a digestive issue. This is also why I use an instrument that measures for nerve inflammation. Anytime there is an injury in the body, inflammation will surround the injured tissue.

This inflammation changes the temperature of the injured tissue and the instrument that I use compares the temperature of the nerves exiting the spine at the same level. The temperature of these nerves should be very similar IF there is no nerve injury. When a nerve does get injured, I am able to pinpoint which nerve it is as well as if it is a new (Acute) or old (Chronic) injury based upon the temperature of the injured nerve. These two pieces of information (Full Spine Radiograph WITH objective measurements AND measuring for Nerve INFLAMMATION) sets our practice apart from the rest and is what makes me a NeuroStructural Chiropractor.

Secondary Conditions

Many people experience secondary conditions that are a direct result of a structural shift of the spin resulting in nerve injury. These typically occur due to a trauma or a repetitive motion injury. Traumas such as car accidents, even minor ones when the vehicles are traveling 10 miles per hour can result in a whiplash injury causing a structural shift of the spine. Athletes also experience traumas and put stress on their bodies that may result in these structural shifts.

Symptoms are signs from our body telling us that there is an underlying problem, the symptom itself is not the cause of the issue. When people decide to cover up symptoms it can lead to a more serious health condition as the injured tissue continues to break down. Take for example what happens when someone has a lower back pain. Structural shifts of the spine typically result in back pain. The body responds by causing a muscle spasm to try and shift the bone back into place, it is common to also have a nerve pain as well. The quality of a nerve pain can be any one of the following: Sharp, Shooting, Burning, Numbness, Tingling or Deep. Knowing what is causing the secondary conditions is key when deciding what treatment will get the best results.

Whole body cryotherapy

The theory of whole body cryotherapy is to receive health benefits by immersing the whole body in sub zero temperatures for several minutes. Cryotherapy chambers are enclosed and the temperature drops to between negative 200-300 degrees F and the person stays in the chamber between two and four minutes. The cryotherapy chambers typically allow the individual to stand up with an opening for the head at the top of the enclosure. You can get benefits from one session of cryotherapy but it is most effective when used regularly. Many athletes use cryotherapy twice per day while other individuals will go 10 days between session.

Cryotherapy Tips

It is always a wise decision to communicate with your doctor before administering the cryotherapy the reason why you are getting treatment. Letting the person know what benefits you are seeking will give them a better idea about what type of cryotherapy will be best for your situation. Frost bite is a real thing when getting cryotherapy; if you do not take proper precautions you may end up with frost bite like Raiders Wide Receiver Antonio Brown this past week. In Colorado Springs we have a variety of different cryotherapy options in town.

Powers Chiropractic Group

We use objective measurements to identify structural shifts that directly result in a nerve injury. As I mentioned earlier we use full spine structural X-rays to see the condition of the entire spine. We measure the height of each disc because the discs act as spacers for the nerve to exit the spine. Additionally we use instrumentation to pin point nerve inflammation. Any time there is an injury in the body, there is inflammation. when someone injures a nerve, inflammation will surround the nerve resulting in a temperature difference between the healthy nerve and the injured nerve.

We pair these two key pieces of information together to create a blueprint for our patients to get well. When the nerve begins to heal itself as the spine is corrected back to within a normal structural and functional range. In our office we never rotate the head or neck as this is damaging to the disc. Instead, we lift the bone up and onto the disc creating more space for the nerve as we correct the structural shifts of the spine. This lifting motion is key in the recovery of individuals who suffer from secondary conditions such as neuropathies like sciatica or any sharp, radiating, burning, tingling or numbness into either the arms or legs.

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