Chiropractic is an alternate health care profession. Chiropractic can be studied at one of two academic institutions in South Africa, University of Johannesburg and Durban Institute of Technology, or abroad. It is for a period of 7 years which includes 2 years of patient internship.
Chiropractors are known as doctors of Chiropractic and are concerned with the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of conditions related to the neuromusculoskeletal system and the effects that these conditions have on the overall health. Chiropractics are able to refer patients to other health care professionals, when necessary.
Chiropractic focuses on the relationship of the skeletal system with the muscle and nervous systems. It is primarily used as a pain relief alternative for muscles, joints, bones, and connective tissue, such as cartilage, ligaments, and tendons. The core emphasis is re-alignment of vertebral/joint subluxations.
Vertebral/joint subluxation basically means that a joint is unable to move and/or physiologically function as it is normally meant to. This can then result in negative effects on the body.
Chiropractic treatment corrects these subluxations by providing specific adjustments to the joint. The adjustment reduces the pressure within the joint cavity and releases the resultant gas bubble which sometimes causes a popping sound. This is called manipulative therapy and can be applied to the spine or other joints in the body such as the shoulder, elbow, wrist , hip, knee, ankle etc. Soft tissue techniques (muscle stretching, strengthening, massage therapy) and modalities (ultrasound, heat/cold therapy, dry needling etc) are then applied as necessary.