According to the Centers for Disease Control, asthma affects approximately 1 in 13 individuals. It is also the leading chronic disease in kids, and is the top reason for school absences. Asthma causes over 2 million ER visits each year and when overnight hospital stays are necessary, the average length is over 3 days. With so many people suffering from asthma, chances are that you or someone you know deals with asthma. The question is, can chiropractic help?
What Is Asthma?
The World Health Organization defines asthma as a chronic disease that is characterized by repetitive episodes of wheezing and breathlessness. The severity and frequency are dependent upon each person. While some people suffer from attacks at any given time, others experience them only in certain situations, like after practicing certain exercises or exposure to certain allergens.
During an asthma attack, the linings of the bronchial tubes (the passageways that air flows through in and out of the lungs) become irritated and swollen. That causes the tubes to narrow, and results in a reduction of airflow in and out of the lungs. Therefore, the sufferer experiences breathlessness and wheezing.
The reduced airflow and asthma attacks can lead to more health issues than the obvious discomfort from lack of proper airflow. Asthma sufferers can experience daytime fatigue, difficulty sleeping, and a decreased ability to concentrate.
Can Chiropractic Care Help Asthma?
As chiropractors, we don't treat asthma. We do, however, look at how well the entire body functions in relation to the health of the spine. If a patient suffers from an ailment like asthma, we look at all levels of the spine associated with the involved structures. Chiropractors can check and adjust the thoracic spinal segments, if necessary, because the nerves that exit that portion of the spine supply the lungs and bronchial tubes.
If the thoracic spine is not achieving its full range of motion or is not properly aligned, it can interfere with how much the lungs can expand when inhaling. When the spine is adjusted and full range of motion to the thoracic spine is restored, it helps the lungs in their ability to take in the maximum amount of air. The decrease in movement may seem small, but all motion counts, particularly for those dealing with asthma. Therefore, chiropractic care may help those experiencing asthma.
If you suffer from asthma and are looking for natural treatments, give us a call today so we can check your spine and help you and your lungs live the healthiest life possible!