Upper Cervical Chiropractic Procedure
A Patient's Perspective with Louella Harris
Founder; National Awareness Campaign for Upper Cervical Care, Inc.
The Upper Cervical Procedure
Precision Upper Cervical adjusting is a little-known chiropractic procedure that corrects the position of the top vertebrae of the spine, the atlas and/or axis. By correcting the tilt, shift or rotation of these vertebrae, the body is able to more overcome the affects or completely eliminate many different conditions.
The atlas is a single, 2 oz. donut-shaped vertebra at the top of the spine. Trillions of nerve fibers from the brain stem travel through the small opening in atlas and flow down into the spinal column. Because of the smallness of the opening and because of the atlas' close proximity to the brain stem, if the atlas has moved out of the position even a fraction of a degree, two very serious things can result.
Body Imbalance: Misalignment
When the atlas and/or axis are out of their proper position, the head moves off center of the body. This creates body imbalance from head to toe. More weight shifts to one side of the body than the other. If these vertebrae are also rotated out of position, they can twist your entire spinal structure, including the pelvis, so that one leg becomes shorter than another. (See illustrations.) Not having your atlas corrected to restore body balance is like continuing to drive a car that is misaligned. Your tires are going to wear out prematurely. You can keep replacing the tires, but unless you have the car aligned, you'll just be wasting your money. The same thing is true for headaches or ADD or hundreds of other conditions that have been known to respond well to Upper Cervical health care. You can keep taking medication, but if your atlas is out of its proper position and causing the problem, it's not going away until you get your atlas corrected and body balance restored.
Misalignment of the bone structure of your head and neck irritates the nervous system causing muscular tension and translates into pain and suffering.
Restriction or Distortion of Brain Messages to Different Parts of the Body
The second serious result of an atlas and/or axis being out of position is the restriction or distortion of critical messages from the brain to all parts of the body. Every cell, organ or tissue that is not receiving adequate nerve energy and communication from the brain will suffer and degenerate. Example: Ball your hand into a fist. This represents your head. Extend your index finger as if you are pointing at someone. Your index finger represents your body. Take a rubber band and wrap it tightly around your index finger at the base of the finger where it is attached to your hand. The rubber band represents your atlas which is wrapped around the spinal cord right near the brain stem and has moved out of its proper position. Wait a few minutes.
Your entire finger begins to turn white and blue due to the circulation being cut off by the rubber band. You can massage your finger to restore circulation. You can inject a syringe with pain medication to stop the pain. In severe cases you can cut off the finger to erase the pain. However, only the symptoms of the problem have been addressed, not the cause. The rubber band is the cause.
When head tilt develops and the body becomes imbalanced, the spinal cord, just below the brain stem, becomes irritated, restricting or distorting the flow of healing messages from the brain to that part of the body serviced by these irritated nerves. This can cause pain and suffering and decrease the quality of your life.
The same thing is true for an atlas that has moved out of its proper position. It can constrict or distort proper brain messages to organs and limbs throughout the body. Your feet may hurt or you may be having kidney problems, but the cause of the problem may not be in those areas at all, but in your neck where a misaligned atlas is restricting or distorting brain messages to areas throughout the body. If your atlas remains out of position for years, degeneration of organ, muscle and cell tissue results. Over time, that could be serious, since in many conditions, pain is the last symptom to occur to indicate a problem exists.
Body Balance: Proper Alignment
The repositioning of the atlas vertebrae is done by hand or by instrument. Depending on the doctor's technique, it feels like a light tap, a brisk thrust, or a soft massage at the side of the neck as the atlas is moved precisely back into its correct position. It is completely "underwhelming." There is no twisting of the neck. Patients are often surprised how anti-climactic it is until, over a period of time, they feel their bodies healing. The procedure cures nothing. It simply restores body balance and brain-to-body communication so that organs, limbs and tissues can resume normal functioning. The body can now self-heal. That is why we see many different conditions responding to the same procedure.
When the body is balanced, spinal cord irritation and tension is removed. Proper communication from the brain to the affected areas of the body is restored. A balanced body will maintain health at optimum level, and symptoms improve or disappear.
However, too many of us wait too long to get our atlas corrected. This is mainly due to ignorance of the vital role the atlas plays in the health of the entire body throughout life. It is becoming increasingly clear that parents should have their children's atlas' examined as soon after birth as possible and have periodic atlas check ups throughout their lives. Countless problems could be avoided entirely. A rightly positioned atlas is so fundamental to good health, children to seniors need to get their atlas examined now.