The International Chiropractic Pediatric Association recently sent out a survey to its members asking for the reasons why parents bring their children in for chiropractic care. The number one reason reported was “wellness.” Parents are recognizing the importance of chiropractic care and the significant role it plays in the family wellness lifestyle.
The term wellness is becoming common and being used by many holistic care groups to describe the type of care they are offering. In an effort to better understand its definition, I looked it up in various dictionaries. Merriam Webster defines wellness as “the quality or state of being in good health, especially as an actively sought goal.” From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia, I read, “Wellness is generally used to mean a healthy balance of the mind, body and spirit that results in an overall feeling of well-being… In other words, wellness is a view of health that emphasizes the state of the entire being and its ongoing development.”
How do we contribute to wellness as Doctors of Chiropractic? As nerve system stress is reduced through the adjustment, all systems and functions of the body are improved. Additionally, doctors of chiropractic offer their patients lifestyle options that contribute to their well-being. Improved posture, suggestions for body movement and exercise significantly contribute toward our overall health. Awareness of the foods we consume and their effects on our health are another way that Doctors of Chiropractic guide their patients to a healthier lifestyle. Chiropractors have always offered these suggestions to their patients, even before other professions saw the importance of these factors in health. These physical components are vital for wellness.
We know that, when we are physically healthier, our minds function more efficiently. In chiropractic, our specific work in reducing nerve system stress has a significant effect on our ability to affect thought and behavior. Pathways magazine, the ICPA public education magazine, has frequently published articles and testimonials supporting the positive effect the chiropractic adjustment has on people’s thoughts and emotions. In our most recent issue, one young boy diagnosed with ADHD says this to his mother about the adjustment: “It takes the noise out of my head.” How profound is his statement in expressing the direct correlation between nerve system function and its effect on the mind.
So, too, our thoughts and attitudes have a direct correlation to our physical health. Current science is demonstrating the relationship between our patterns of thinking and our physical health. We can eat the best food and exercise daily but, if our overall outlook on life is negative, these thoughts and emotions will adversely affect our ability to experience well-being. In this area, doctors of chiropractic offer a huge contribution toward fulfillment of wellness. The chiropractic profession has always provided patients with a unique perspective: recognizing, respecting and trusting in the body’s innate ability to heal and be well. It is exciting to see the current research being published in the scientific arena to substantiate the direct relationship between our outlook on life and our health.
Doctors of Chiropractic are leaders in the wellness movement. We have always emphasized whole body well-being and our core understanding of life and health promotes balance of the mind/body relationship. As a profession, we need to continue to emphasize our unique perspective and offer services consistent with this wellness model.
Dr. Jeanne Ohm instructs internationally on the topic “Chiropractic Care for Pregnant Women and Children.” She is executive coordinator of the International Chiropractic Pediatric Association and can be reached via their website at www.icpa4kids.com.
Information about the upcoming Pangea 2006 Conference, Oct. 26-28, can be found on the ICPA website: www.icpa4kids.com.