I’ve slowly grown accustomed to the adjustments of chiropractic care. I wasn’t too sore the past weekend from the first week of care, so I went into this week with optimism. Monday consisted of the standard adjustment: A light massage by Sue*, the chiropractic assistant, followed by manual manipulation of my back, right side, left side, and neck by Dr. Tom*.How week 2 went with my #ChiropracticCare visits using #coldlasertherapy and #activatormethod. #chiropractor Click To Tweet
Activator Method Technique
Sometimes the massage was after the manipulation, but it happened. Sue told me my back may become itchy due to the massager raising the blood to the surface. I did have an itchy back the first few times, but I no longer experience it. Just another successful adjustment for my body.
Monday’s visit involved the use of a new gadget: the activator. Tami had told me about this gadget when her and I chatted initially about chiropractic care, so I was familiar with what it did. I’m going to be honest – initially it hurts. Not terribly and not so much I dread it. It’s a quick, sharp jab that is over in less than a second.
The purpose of an activator is “to deliver a gentle impulse force to the spine with the goal of restoring motion to the targeted spinal vertebra or joint”. Read more about the activator method.
The reason he used this device was because my lower back is terribly inflamed. Manual manipulation would hurt, possibly cause more damage. By using the activator, he can still treat my back without it being painful to me. It takes a longer time to correct the issue, but it’s still effective.
My back was tender after this visit using the activator. It didn’t interfere with my daily activities and it didn’t trigger a flare of any time, so it was successful.
Cold Laser Therapy
Wednesday’s visit also involved a new gadget: cold laser therapy. After manual manipulation on my mid-back and the activator on my lower back, Dr. Tom asked if I would be willing to try a therapy on my lower back. He said this would be to help with the inflammation. I told him I’d be willing to give it a try.
Spine Health describes cold laser therapy as “a treatment that utilizes specific wavelengths of light to interact with tissue and is thought to help accelerate the healing process. It can be used on patients who suffer from a variety of acute and chronic conditions in order to help eliminate pain, swelling, reduce spasms and increase functionality.” Read more details.
It’s quite interesting how the whole process works. It’s compared to photosynthesis in plants. Pretty neat.
I followed Sue and Dr. Tom to the intake room and laid down on the massage table. Sue conducted the therapy after Dr. Tom explained the procedure to me. The treatment was quite relaxing. It starts off as cold probes being rubbed in a circular motion on my lower back. It slowly warms up as time passes. The total time was ten minutes or so. Not long at all.
I became so relaxed with it that the table left imprints on my face! Haha
I was okay after that session for about two hours. After that, I became inflamed in my lower back. It was sore and tender. A friend mentioned going to the pool that afternoon, and I knew a swim would loosen up my back and ease the pain. Although, I swam for ten minutes before my teeth were chattering. It’s still too cold to swim for me.
The remainder of the day was a take-it-slow type of day. My lower back was sore from the visit, and I didn’t want to aggravate it further. I really didn’t want to trigger a flare, so I took the remainder of the day relaxing as best as I could.
How I felt after the sessions
Thursday I was fine again with no traces of being sore. I don’t know if the inflammation had died down because I only feel the inflammation when I’m in the office and Dr. Tom is feeling that area of my back. I don’t touch back there unless I have to. And I don’t have to, so I don’t. Know what I mean?
Because I felt rested and ‘normal’ I pushed myself way too far. After hours of working on the computer with little to no breaks, I worked on my garden plants and then cooked an elaborate meal. I should have planned all that better, but I didn’t and paid dearly for it.
My mid and lower back were super painful that night. It hurt to walk and climb stairs. Family dinner time is a special time of the day and I hate any of the family missing it. I strive for us to come together at least once a day, so me missing dinner Thursday night was with a heavy heart. I spent the evening and rest of the night in bed – on my back with feet up.
I have this all natural pain relief rub I use for my nerve pain (it’s a miracle for nerve pain), but I also use it for pain like this. Tim applied it to my back, but the mere pressure of it causes excruciating pain for me. If I didn’t know the rub would work so well, I wouldn’t have used it. I knew the applying would be temporary and relief would be upon me soon.
Sure enough, it was and I went to sleep.
Friday’s visit was just the activator. I told Dr. Tom of my painful back, so he avoided manual manipulation and did the activator instead. I was grateful to have a physician that listened to his patients.
At the conclusion of this week, I’ve noticed less overall body pain and less episodes of nerve pain. My stomach is not as nervous and my appetite has increased to where I’m eating full meals throughout the day.
Be sure to read the rest of this chiropractic care series.
*All names changed for privacy.