According to the Centers for Disease Control, asthma affects about every 1 in 13 individuals. It is the leading cause for chronic disease in kids, and is one of the leading reasons for school absences. Additionally, asthma causes more than 2 million emergency room visits each year, and the average overnight hospital stay is over three days. With so many people suffering from asthma, chances are that you or someone you know suffers, too. Is it possible that chiropractic can help?
What Is Asthma?
You've heard of asthma, but do you know what it really is? Asthma is defined as a chronic disease characterized by repetitive episodes of wheezing and breathlessness. The frequency and severity of asthma attacks is dependent upon the individual. Some might suffer from attacks at any given moment, whereas others are triggered by certain situations, such as after strenuous exercise or exposure to certain allergens.
When an individual experiences an asthma attack, the bronchial tubes (the linings of the passageways that air flows through in and out of the lungs) become irritated and swollen. That irritation causes the tubes to narrow, which results in restricted air flow. The individual then experiences breathlessness and wheezing.
Discomfort is an obvious side effect, but the lack of proper airflow can lead to more serious issues. The individual can also suffer from fatigue, difficulty concentrating, and issues with sleeping.
Can Chiropractic Help?
As chiropractors, we don't necessarily treat asthma but we do observe how well the body functions in relation to the health of the spine. If one of our patients is suffering from something like asthma, we will look at the levels of the spine that are associated with all involved structures. For example, we can adjust the thoracic spinal segments because the nerves that leave that part of the spine are what supplies the lungs and bronchial tubes.
If the thoracic spine is misaligned or not reaching its full range of motion, it can cause an interference in relation to how large the lungs expand during inhalation. When the spine is adjusted and full range of motion is returned to the thoracic spine, the lungs are better able to fully expand, taking in the greatest amount of air. The decrease in movement might seem small, but for those suffering from asthma, all motion counts! By seeking chiropractic treatment, asthma sufferers may be able to find some relief.
If you suffer from asthma and are looking for additional treatments to help your body reach optimal performance, schedule an appointment today. We are here to help you and your lungs be as healthy as possible!