In 2004 a case study was published in the Journal of Subluxation Research documenting a women’s recovery from debilitating anxiety with the use of chiropractic care. Although this link between anxiety and chiropractic was hypothesized as early as 1988 there was little research done that could concretely confirm these claims. Since then more and more individual cases have been revealed and the link between anxiety and chiropractic treatment has become a hot topic in the chiropractic world. Research shows that although chiropractic care does not treat the underlying psychological causes of anxiety it can be hugely effective for the management of symptoms. The Anxiety Centre reported that in a survey given to patients with Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD) who had tried chiropractic care they found that the majority of patients reported “some to great benefit” resulting from their treatment. Popular blogger, EPBOT, wrote a testimony of her journey with anxiety and what she describes as “her breakthrough” decision to try chiropractic care. In her post she describes where she is a year after her first visit; “Today I’m at a pretty good place with my anxiety. I still have it, obviously, but I can go months and months without attacks, and when they do strike these days they’re milder than they used to be.”
What does a common psychological disorder have to do with doctors that primarily focus on the back? The answer lies in the central nervous system. Your nervous system connects the brain to the rest of the body. The “highway” of these nerves is housed within the spine. When the spine is misaligned it causes nerve irritation that results in the misfiring of signals to muscles and other parts of the body. An article published by US News describing lesser known benefits of chiropractic care illuminated that chiropractors are able to address stress and anxiety through the “release [of] muscle tension, […] that leads to nerve irritation and creates uneven pressures on the body’s bony structures, which can cause the spinal column to become misaligned.” The realignment of which counters the physiological responses to chronic stress present with GAD. In addition the realignment of the Central Nervous System results in the release of pressure on nerves which allows for better regulation of blood circulation and alleviation of symptoms of high blood pressure that contribute to feelings of anxiety.
Chiropractic care does not cure anxiety but it seems like it can serve as a powerful tool to help you manage your condition and help you take back control of your own life. There is still a lot of research to be done in this field and we at Santa Clara Custom Chiropractic are excited to watch as it develops. If you have any questions or would like to see how chiropractic care can make a difference don’t hesistate to give us call. We are always happy to help or clarify in any way we can.