Upper Cervical Chiropractic Care vs. Traditional Chiropractic Care

December 11, 2023
Upper Cervical Care

What is the Difference Between Upper Cervical Chiropractic and Traditional Chiropractic Care?

You may be wondering what the difference is between these two methods. Both of these types of treatment improve spinal health and assist with pain relief but there are some important differences between them.

Upper Cervical Chiropractic Care

The focus of upper cervical chiropractic care is the top two vertebrae in the neck, known as the atlas and axis and the unique neurology it houses (Brain Stem). These vertebrae support the weight of the head and give your neck its range of motion. When these vertebrae become misaligned, it can result in a range of issues throughout the body and impair your nervous system health to a high degree. 

Upper cervical chiropractors first use specific forms of analysis to detect an upper cervical misalignment (a subluxation). Some Doctors use digital instruments, others use protocols to look for a posture imbalance. A series of very specific X-rays or a CT scan will facilitate the creation of a custom upper cervical adjustment. Applying an upper cervical adjustment is performed with precision using an instrument or by hand on a unique table made for these kinds of corrections.  

This adjustment can improve body function, impact overall spinal health, and remove interference from the brain’s communication with the rest of the body. This speciality is a good option for patients who have found traditional chiropractic care to be lacking in desired results or reached a plateau of symptoms.

Upper cervical chiropractic care can improve neck pain, headaches, migraines, vertigo, range of motion, nervous system function, blood flow to the brain, immune system function, quality of sleep, energy, post-concussion syndrome, chronic fatigue syndrome, trigeminal neuralgia, TMJ, Fibromyalgia, Meniere’s Disease, and Lyme Disease.

Another benefit of this type of care is that the precise adjustments often allow patients to achieve their goals in fewer visits. This is helpful for busy patients or for those who live far away.

Traditional Chiropractic Care

Traditional chiropractic care is a more comprehensive approach that treats the entire spine and extremities (arm and leg issues). A larger range of techniques are used by traditional chiropractors. These include manual adjustments, adjustments with instruments, massage, and other therapies. Traditional chiropractors may also treat the upper cervical spine but not as a focus of the practice or any higher level of specificity.

This type of chiropractic care focuses on treating back, neck, joint, and muscle pain. It can also improve your range of motion when you reduce or eliminate your pain. Some other traditional chiropractors help with injuries related to Motor Vehicle Collisions, work injuries or sports injuries. 

Deciding Between Types of Chiropractic Care

The choice between upper cervical chiropractic and traditional chiropractic care depends on the patient’s needs and preferences. Having an understanding of the way the care is applied is key when deciding which is best for you. We hope this information has helped you understand the benefits of different types of chiropractic care.

Beginning Upper Cervical Chiropractic Care Treatment

If you are ready to get some help with your health issue, then schedule a FREE consultation, or to book an Exam with Dr. Burks here at The Upper Cervical Clinic in Tigard, OR. We look forward to hearing from you and discussing the opportunity to help you with your well-being.

The Upper Cervical Clinic
7180 SW Fir Loop Suite 250
Tigard, OR 97223
(503) 597-8352

Valerie Garrett

Valerie joined us in March 2016 as our Community Outreach Director. She enjoys reaching out to the community and sharing the important role upper cervical care plays in a healthy lifestyle.  You will also find her at our front desk greeting and scheduling our patients with a smile.  She says hearing their stories of improved health and function makes her happy and is why she loves working here.

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