What is Chiropractic?
Chiropractic is a health care profession that focuses on disorders of the musculoskeletal system and the nervous system, and the effects of these disorders on general health. Chiropractic care is used most often to treat neuromusculoskeletal complaints, including but not limited to back pain, neck pain, pain in the joints of the arms or legs, and headaches.
Doctors of Chiropractic – often referred to as chiropractors or chiropractic physicians – practice a drug-free, hands-on approach to health care that includes patient examination, diagnosis and treatment. Chiropractors have broad diagnostic skills and are also trained to recommend therapeutic and rehabilitative exercises, as well as to provide nutritional, dietary and lifestyle counseling.
The most common therapeutic procedure performed by doctors of chiropractic is known as “spinal manipulation,” also called “chiropractic adjustment.” The purpose of the adjustment is to restore joint mobility by manually applying a controlled force into joints that have become hypomobile – or restricted in their movement – as a result of a tissue injury. Tissue injury can be caused by a single traumatic event, such as improper lifting of a heavy object, or through repetitive stresses, such as sitting in an awkward position with poor spinal posture for an extended period of time. In either case, injured tissues undergo physical and chemical changes that can cause inflammation, pain, and diminished function for the sufferer. Adjustment of the affected joint and tissues, restores mobility, thereby alleviating pain and muscle tightness, and allowing tissues to heal.
Chiropractic adjustment rarely causes discomfort. However, patients may sometimes experience mild soreness or aching following treatment (as with some forms of exercise) that usually resolves within 12 to 48 hours.
In many cases, such as lower back pain, chiropractic care may be the primary method of treatment. When other medical conditions exist, chiropractic care may complement or support medical treatment by relieving the musculoskeletal aspects associated with the condition.
Doctors of chiropractic may assess patients through clinical examination, laboratory testing, diagnostic imaging and other diagnostic interventions to determine when chiropractic treatment is appropriate or when it is not appropriate. Chiropractors will readily refer patients to the appropriate health care provider when chiropractic care is not suitable for the patient’s condition, or the condition warrants co-management in conjunction with other members of the health care team.
What is Gonstead Chiropractic?
Gonstead represents the ultimate standard in "hands on" spinal adjusting and remains the leader in chiropractic techniques. Adhering to the definition of true chiropractic as defined by D. D. Palmer, the founder of Chiropractic in 1895, Dr. Gonstead found there was no substitute or better method for analyzing or correcting spinal misalignments than with a pair of skilled chiropractic hands. This remains true today.
Dr. Clarence S. Gonstead (1898-1978) began practicing chiropractic in 1923 in Mt. Horeb, Wisconsin, a small farming community of 1,200 residents in south central Wisconsin. Dr. Gonstead's reputation spread throughout the state, the country and ultimately around the world, as a multitude of patient's health problems were corrected remarkably fast by his brand of chiropractic treatment. Hundreds of patients were seeking his care on a daily basis, and with his dedication to helping these patients, Dr. Gonstead worked from 8 a.m. to midnight six days a week plus every Sunday morning from 5 to 10 a.m. to be able to accommodate these growing patient numbers. When Dr. Gonstead's schedule was at the limit of his physical capability, he knew the only solution to meet the public's health needs on the scale the public was demanding, was to build an unparalleled chiropractic treatment facility and staff it with Gonstead trained associates.
The Gonstead Clinic of Chiropractic, completed in 1964, was the third and final clinic Dr. Gonstead would design and treat patients from in this little town of Mt. Horeb before his death in 1978. Dr. Gonstead built the largest chiropractic facility in the world. A 22,000 square foot clinic, it had a waiting room to seat over 100 patients, 11 adjusting rooms, x-ray facilities and lab, and a lower level to hold Chiropractic seminars. It was to become the most renowned chiropractic facility in the world. Next to his new clinic, Dr. Gonstead added a 78 room, full-service motel to accommodate the clinic's numerous long distance patients. Dr. Gonstead and his fellow staff members attended 300 to 400 patients on a daily basis. This huge following of patients led Dr. Gonstead to start the Gonstead Seminar of Chiropractic, helping to teach and develop even more Chiropractors in the art and philosophy of the Gonstead system of chiropractic treatment.