What is Chiropractic?

Chiropractic can be defined as a health profession concerned with the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of mechanical disorders of the musculoskeletal system, and the effects of these disorders on the function of the nervous system and general health. There is an emphasis on manual treatments including spinal adjustment and other joint and soft-tissue manipulation. Chiropractic treatment usually involves a specialized chiropractic manipulation/ chiropractic adjustment. This chiropractic technique involves applying a specifically directed force to a joint that is not moving correctly. The chiropractor will use his/her hands to palpate these joints that are ‘stuck’.  The chiropractor will also assess muscles and nerve function to ensure that your body is working optimally. 


Healthy woman jumping on beach


Chiropractors provide a natural and holistic approach to correct the cause of your health concerns as well as to facilitate the body’s own healing ability by focusing on the relationship between your spine and nervous system. 

It is primarily aimed at the detection and correction of abnormal spinal movements and position. After thorough examination and analysis, chiropractors use carefully controlled directed pressure to restore proper spinal function which reduces any interference to the nervous system. Chiropractors also recognise the importance of nutrition, exercise and other lifestyle factors on overall health and will often advise on these aspects during your care.


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Other definitions of Chiropractic

“Chiropractic is a healthcare discipline that emphasizes the inherent recuperative power of the body to heal itself without the use of drugs or surgery. The practice of chiropractic focuses on the relationship between structure (primarily the spine) and function (as coordinated by the nervous system) and how that relationship affects the preservation and restoration of health. In addition, doctors of chiropractic recognize the value and responsibility of working in cooperation with other health care practitioners when in the best interest of the patient." 

Definition by The Association of Chiropractic Colleges.


“A health care profession concerned with the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of disorders of the neuromusculoskeletal system and the effects of these disorders on general health. There is an emphasis on manual techniques, including joint adjustment and/or manipulation with a particular focus on subluxations." 

Definition by The World Health Organization.


-"Chiropractic is a health profession specializing in the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of mechanical disorders of the musculoskeletal system and the affects of these disorders on the function of the nervous system and general health. Chiropractic practitioners essentially rely upon non-invasive treatment methods and will refer patients to medical practitioners should medication or surgery be indicated. This approach is further reinforced by chiropractors in their promotion of healthy lifestyles such as the avoidance of smoking and excess stress, proper diet and exercise." 

Definition by The Chiropractic Association of South Africa.