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Immune System

Over the years, chiropractic physicians have reported success in treating
a variety of conditions associated with bacterial and viral infection.
Manipulation of the vertebrae has an influence on neurologic function,
lymphatic drainage, blood flow and muscle tension. Recent research
by Patricia C Brennan, Ph.D., suggests that manipulation may also have
a great effect on certain aspects of immune function. Her group
showed that when the thoracic spine (mid-back) was adjusted, the
respiratory burst cycle of white blood cells was enhanced. Manipulation
is thought to stimulate immune function, in part by promoting the release of endorphins long associated
with improving immunity.

Source: Gregory R. Salmond, D.C.

Understanding the Link Between Chiropractic and Your Immune System

by Dr. Paul Newton

Itís usually about this time of the year when I start hearing comments
like "Gee, I havenít been sick yet this year!" or "Our family hasnít had
any colds this winter!" People are quite surprised by how much better
their immune system is working since theyíve been under chiropractic
care. These people understood that the nervous system controlled and
coordinated every other system in the body but they didnít believe it
until they experienced it first hand.

When a new person begins chiropractic care, we spend a great deal of
time and effort to educate him/her about the bodyís capabilities when
the nervous system is free of stress. We explain how every system in
your body requires non-stop direction and feedback from the brain and
spinal cord to make sure it is doing its job perfectly. This includes the
immune system.

Most grasp this concept rather enthusiastically because they realize that
their body wants to be healthy and it just needs a chance to do it on its
own. The problem we encounter occurs when this new person comes
down with something, runs to the doctor and gets put on antibiotics.
The old belief system overrides all concepts of self-healing because an
infection made them sick.

Oddly enough, many people do get sick shortly after beginning chiropractic
care. As discouraging as this is to most, this is a very positive healing
response. Have you ever, in a moment of inspiration, decided to clean
up your desk, your office, your basement etc. because you felt it would
have a positive impact on your life? You didnít like the way you were
operating and decided that things needed to change. Your body does
the same thing.

When you get adjusted and your body releases stress that has been
preoccupying most of its systems, your body gets inspired and decides
to change the state of affairs. It doesnít like all the critters that have
taken up residence so it mounts an immune response to kill them all.
This makes us feel discomfort and we have been taught through
experience that this means we are sick. Most of us just want the
discomfort to stop so we ask our doctor for something to make it go
away. We take some medicine and demotivate the body, forcing it to
return to its original state.

Chiropractors have been telling people this for years and it is very
exciting for us to finally see some scientific proof. New research in
the area of neuroimmunobiology has shown that there are nerve endings
in the bodyís immune tissues. Scientists now believe that the nervous
system and the immune system may be connected. Itís always nice to
have some scientific validation!

So do I think all medicine is bad? No. Sometimes when we let our bodies
get so run down that many of our immune responses are ineffective, life-threatening infections can take hold in places where bacteria can never
get in a healthy person. Take pneumonia for example. This disease that
used to affect and kill only very sick people is showing up routinely in
the public. Antibiotics may be necessary to remove the immediate threat
but once the infection is under control, is that person really healthy?

If youíre sick of your yearly bout of bronchitis or afraid of what your kids
bring home from school, itís time to build up your defenses. Regular
chiropractic care is an integral step towards perfect health. You and
your family need regular adjustments to keep your systems in perfect
working order.

Source: 2002-2001 Filosofi Health Management Corporation

Chiropractic works on the body's immune system and its cells through
the nervous system, because the CD4 (T4) cells of the immune system
have tiny nerves going to them. Chiropractic adjustments correct for
interference to our main nervous system (brain and spinal cord), which
then has a positive effect on the rest of our nervous system and body.

Source: Life College, Atlanta, GA, USAResearch on Upper Cervical
Adjustments and CD4 Cell Count

Did you know that the nervous system directly and indirectly controls the
immune system. It's called - psychoneuroimmunology.

Source: Dr. Christopher Kent ICA Convention Atlanta Georgia, 1999

There is an increasing body of evidence that the nervous system is
capable of modulating the immune response. It is theorized that spinal
fixations may adversely affect the immune response through
somatosympathetic reflexes.

Spinal manipulation can correct the spinal fixations and may eliminate
the adverse affects of somatosympathetic reflexes.

Source: Fidelibus JC. An overview of neuroimmunomodulation and a possible
correlation with musculoskeletal system function.J Manipulative Physiol Ther 1989;12(4):289-292 / Medline ID: 89361050

  • Psychological stress can produce physiological changes that suppress
    the immune system making us prone to illness.
  • Positive feelings and states of expectancy, can work not only to
    enhance our health but to eliminate disease

Source: David S. Sobel, MD, MPH, The Healing Brain, A Scientific Reader,
Edited by Robert Ornstewin, PhD and Charles Swencionis, PhD The Gilford
Press, New York, 1990

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