Chiropractic & Placebo

When you look at the overall view of a chiropractic treatment – man (or women) clicks bone – person having bone ‘clicked’ feels better..It’s all very strange. Indeed, there are some that would argue that having your bones ‘clicked’ and feeling better is nothing more than a ‘placebo’ effect. To put it in simple terms, the very thought of having something done creates the desired results. Indeed, more recently there have been research studies to suggest that ‘Paracetamol ‘has no more benefit than taking a tablet of chalk. If you have any doubts about placebo, try putting placebo surgery in your search engines to get more startling results!

Undoubtedly, there is an element of placebo with Chiropractic treatment. It cannot be ignored. But does that mean that placebo is the only entity at work? Absolutely not.

Is the 'thought' of having something done the driving factor for success in treatments?

Is the ‘thought’ of having something done the driving factor for success in treatments?

I am cursed with an inquisitive analytical mind. If someone tells me something, I’ll take it at face value and do my own further research. I have been utilising various chiropractic techniques for nearly seventeen years, and here are just a few ideas coming about from research.

  1. A chiropractic adjustment is a specific high velocity / low amplitude thrust that is delivered locally to the spine but is felt globally in the brain.
  2. Animal studies show that adhesions and scar tissue form around any joint that is immobile (not moving).
  3. Adhesions and scar tissue form around joints. Ligaments, and muscles that have undergone damage (sprain / strain)
  4. A chiropractic adjustment is thought to stretch adhesions and scar tissue around the joint allowing a more desirable movement pattern.
  5. The global effects on the brain after a chiropractic treatment are thought to be better perception of joint position, and control of the surrounding muscles.

The placebo effect is a real phenomenon. We cannot deny some of it takes place in every chiropractic treatment. Ongoing research suggests that there is something more going on. I’ll update in due course.