Understanding Chiropractic Methods and Techniques

Chiropractors may use a variety of chiropractic methods and techniques that help align the spine while reducing pain, increasing mobility and improving health.  Some doctors may focus on one technique while others may use a combination of chiropractic methods when offering treatment.

#1 Sacro-Occipital Technique (SOT)

SOT is the relationship between the sacrum and occiput. SOT is a method of normalizing the relationship between the foundation of the spine and the top of the spine.  This technique helps to normalize the function of the brain and spinal cord. Sacro Occipital technique is specifically designed to treat problems in the lower back.  Triangular blocks are placed under the pelvis of the prone patient, and low force, slow pressure manipulations and adjustment are made to joints in the skull.   Some chiropractors use SOT as an exclusive technique, while others use it in conjunction with other chiropractic methods.

#2 Chiropractic Manipulative Reflex Technique (CMRT)

Included in SOT Methods is CMRT.  CMRT is a system of organ function analysis and treatment as it relates to the spine.  CMRT along with Applied Kineseology, patient symptoms, and lab work  allows the Dr. to take a whole person approach to health. It is an analysis revealing the interrelationship between the spine and organs

#3 Cranial Technique

This is not a specific chiropractic technique, but possibly several techniques using the application of chiropractic manipulation/adjustment to joints of the skull (similar to the SOT technique).  Since individual anatomy of skull joints is different, the styles of manipulation/adjustment are different.

#4 Applied Kinesiology

Applied Kinesiology employs a system of muscle testing and assessment of whether certain muscles are found to be consistently weak.  Based on this information and patient history, appropriate diagnostic work ups, including lab work, are used to identify the relationship between certain muscle and the function of corresponding organs.  Nutritional support and chiropractic manipulation are then used to balance the patient.

#5 Logan Basic

This is a specific chiropractic technique in which light pressure is applied to the ligaments of the sacrum.  Light force is concurrently applied to various spinal levels to reduce pain/symptoms, restore muscle balance and align the spine.  This technique is very gentle and effective with children and adults alike.

#6 Diversified Technique

Diversified Technique is the classic chiropractic technique, developed by D.D. Palmer, DC and taught in all chiropractic colleges.  The focus is on restoration to normal biomechanical function, and correction of sublaxation.

Diversified technique (DT) is the most commonly used adjustment technique by chiropractors to restore proper movement and alignment of spine and joint dysfunction.

#7 Cox Technique/Flexion-Distraction

This chiropractic technique uses both mechanical and manual manipulation.  The patient is placed on a special table where the spine is in traction and flexed forward.  Cox Flexion is used primarily to treat lumbar and cervical disc herniation and non-disc spinal disorders.  It can also be used to increase the mobility of spinal joints.

#8 Extremity Manipulation

This is the application of chiropractic manipulation/adjustment to joints other than those of the spine, i.e., shoulder, elbow, wrist/hand/finger, hip, knee, ankle/foot/toe.  Examples of condtions treated by extremity manipulation/adjustment:  carpal tunnel syndrome, gait, or posture-related problems.

#9 Activator Method –  lighter, quicker thrust.  Gentle  primary treatment.

This is a hand-held, spring-loaded instrument-based manipulation/adjustment protocol. Instead of the manipulating/adjusting forces being delivered by hand, force is generated with the small appliance that delivers a lighter, but quicker, thrust than can be delivered by hand.  Activator can be used as a primary treatment protocol for all patients or a selective method for patients who may not desire manual manipulation/adjustment or where manual manipulation/adjustment may be contraindicated.

#10 Thompson Technique

This is a specific chiropractic method and is a variation of the diversified that uses a special table with several segments called drop pieces.  These segments can be cocked up a fraction of an inch, so when the trust is delivered, the table will drop this fraction of an inch.  The object of the drop is to distract (open) the joint during the adjustment.  The drop pieces assist the thrust, while minimizing the force required for the adjustment.  Cavitation of the joint may or may not occur.

#11 Meric Technique

This is not a specific chiropractic technique, but refers more to clinical decision making regarding what spinal levels to manipulate/adjust.  Spinal segments are manipulated/adjusted (usually with a diversified technique)  corresponding to the nerves that supply the area of patient symptomatology. EX:  The Meric System within SOT/CMRT tells us that the adrenals receive their innervation from the T9 (9th Thoracic) Region.

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