Alternative Medicine
Chiropractic is the third largest doctoral-level health profession in the United

States, after medicine and dentistry. This form of health care is on the rise
and there are more than forty thousand chiropractors in practice in all fifty
states, the District of Columbia, and many other nations. Chiropractic is a form
of alternative medicine commonly used and accepted today. Chiropractic is
specifically defined as a therapeutic system of curing ailments and manipulation
of various body parts, particularly the spinal column. Although chiropractors
have had a hard time establishing a worthy reputation, times have changed and
studies are proving the benefits of chiropractic. In order for people to receive
natural, holistic, efficient, and cost-effective treatment, people should seek
doctors of chiropractic. (Thesis: "In order for...") Chiropractic was
first started by David Daniel Palmer in 1895. Palmer began his practices in
magnetic healing in response to his "never-ending thirst for
knowledge" in 1887 (Chiropractic OnLine Today). When he moved to Davenport,

Iowa, Palmer began chiropractic with his first adjustment on a janitor on

September 18, 1895. The janitor had been deaf for seventeen years after hearing
a pop in his back one day. Palmer concluded that one of his vertebrae was out of
place and so he "thrusted the vertebrae back into place" and the
manís hearing automatically improved (Chiropractic OnLine Today). This was the
birth of the chiropractic theory, which means "to do by hand." Palmer
believed that "decreased nerve flow may be the cause of disease, and that
misplaced spinal vertebrae may cause pressure on the nerves" (Chiropractic

OnLine Today). In conclusion, he theorized, if the spinal column was accurately
positioned, the body would be healthy. Palmer began a chiropractic school,

Palmer Infirmary and Chiropractic Institute, in 1907. His son, Bartlett Joshua,
was one of the first fifteen graduated. Later in his life, Bartlett also had a
large impact on the chiropractic field when his dad ran into some legal
problems. Palmerís son took over the school and helped chiropractic to gain
prominence in the medical field. Following its founding, chiropractic went
downhill and then in the 1940ís began to grow again. In July 1995, the first

Historical Centennial Celebration took place in Washington, DC with thousands of
professional in the field attending. (Background) Chiropractic is holistic and
concerned with a patientís overall well-being. Chiropractic treatment
considers the whole person and "gives special treatment to the
physiological and biochemical aspects including structural, spinal,
musculoskeletal, neurological, vascular, nutritional, emotional, and
environmental relationships"(American Chiropractic Association). Many
people initially think of consulting a chiropractor for back pain only, but
there are many other components of chiropractic treatment and has the ability to
help many illnesses and problems. Because the spine is like the trunk of the
body, it can have impact on all areas of the human structure. The many moveable
parts of the spine make it a complex system. In addition to the twenty-four
vertebrae, there are joints between each vertebra. In such a system, "in
order to maintain balance, each one these joints must be moving entirely and
properly" (Bayuk). If just one component is out of line, the imbalance
disturbs the nervous system, called subluxation. Chiropractic helps the body
keep control of itself through manipulation of the spinal column. While the
spine helps control the muscles of the body, it also includes the bodyís
ability to breathe properly, keep the heart beating, and other vital functions.

The spine column has many nerves that control the blood flow through blood
vessels, proper digestion, and the immune system. Just because chiropractors
focus on the spinal column, does not limit their field of treatment. In
actuality, this very fact is what allows chiropractic to help such a broad range
of problems and conditions. For example, a 1991 study at National College of

Chiropractic renders very promising news for women suffering from tortuous
menstruation. This FCER-funded study found that "women who received
chiropractic spinal manipulation reported significant reduction in back pain and
menstrual distress"(Joseph, Chiropractic Works). Along with menstruation,
headaches, allergies, asthma, stomach disorders, spastic colon, and arm, hand,
and leg pain are treatable by chiropractors. (Evidence #1) Chiropractic, in
addition to holistic, is efficient and cost-effective. Until recently,
chiropractic was ignored by most others, but new studies are confirming claims
of efficiency and cost-effectiveness. Now chiropractic is receiving much more
notice. While research is convincing the community of the effectiveness of cost
and capability of treatment of the chiropractic method, thousands of people,
worldwide, are finding restored mobility and alleviation from pain in their
doctor of chiropractic. Results of a Florida study indicated chiropractic
patients experienced shorter periods of total disability, and their cost of care
was less in comparison to