Tips for Holding Your NUCCA Adjustments

One of the most amazing things about NUCCA chiropractic is that your adjustments can measurably last for days, months or years. When your spine is stable, your body can heal more fully.

Over the years as a NUCCA practitioner, I have noticed that different things can help patients stabilize their spine. It can be adding a new vitamin such as an adrenal support supplement, a change in diet or a new exercise regime. Other times a change in their emotional state helped them.  One patient started holding her alignment when she fell in love, and another held her alignment from the day she received her divorce papers. Adding nurturing, or removing a stressor can be the key to greater health.

Here are the most important things that influence a patient’s ability to hold their adjustment:

  1. The consistency of your care: By far the most important factor in stabilizing your spine is the consistency of your care. If you have been out of alignment for 30, 40, 50 or 60 years, your body is not going to heal instantly. Although your symptoms may feel better quickly, your tissues will require some time to heal. Your spine must spend more time in alignment than out of alignment, in order to stabilize. 

    We have found that most of our patients have optimal results by getting checked 3 times a week in the beginning and then 2 times per week until they are consistently stable for 1 week. For many adults this phase lasts 3-8 months, especially if you have a scoliosis or a reverse curve in your neck.  (Children usually require way less time). 

    Once your spine holds your alignment consistently for 1 week, we begin checking you 1/week in maintenance. 

    In our experience, the least that we check someone is one time a month when they are holding for years. Often once a patient reaches this level of stability, they are typically asymptomatic. If their spine is misaligned it can take months or years for their original or new symptoms to show up, during which time their spine can degenerate and grow permanent arthritic damage. 

  2. Stress: The next thing that causes you to lose your alignment is stress. You can be emotionally or physically stressed. Stress can overwhelm your mind, and when it reaches a certain threshold, it will overwhelm your body’s ability to hold your spinal correction.

    When your body keeps secreting adrenaline in fight or flight situations, it releases stress chemicals into your body. One side effect of these chemicals is that they weaken your ligaments . As a result, your body cannot hold your alignments.

    Our point of view creates our reality. There will always be things that cause stress. It is how we handle this stress that determines whether it will knock us out of alignment. If a baboon breaks out of a sloat zoo it is most likely not going to run all the way to Fishermans wharf to kill only you… If you notice, most of the things that you have ever worried about have never happened! 

  3. Fatigue: The third most important factor in your stability is when you run  yourself down, get too tired and don’t take breaks when you need them.  When your spine is corrected, your ligaments will begin to heal. Until your ligaments have healed enough to hold your spine in the corrected position, they are held by the muscles around your spine. It is important to note that your muscles were not originally designed to hold your spine in place. The primary tissues for that job are your ligaments. Your muscles, unlike ligaments, can get fatigued.

    For example, if you hold a bowling ball straight in front of you, you could hold it until your muscles reach their fatigue point and then you will have to drop the ball. A similar thing happens with your spine; when your muscles reach their fatigue point your correction will be lost because your body cannot hold it in place anymore. 

    Take a 15-20 minute break, allowing time for the fatigue in your muscles to pass, and then resume what you were doing. 

    The most common signs of fatigue are feeling weakness, tension, or tightness in the muscles in your neck and spine. The reason your muscles tense up is because they are straining to hold on to your alignment. Patients must learn to resist the temptation to just keep working and ignore the “stop sign” their body is giving them. 

    The most important thing to remember is that wherever you are and whatever shape you are in, the way to get stronger is to recognize that you are where you are, and take breaks when you need them!

  4. Take it easy for the first couple hours after an adjustment: The first couple hours are your most vulnerable when it comes to not holding your adjustment.  If you are going to work out or get a massage, do so before your adjustment or wait at least 2 hours after. Don’t do anything too strenuous or overly stressful.

  5. Choose to be HAPPY!!! The main cause of re-subluxation has been shown to be emotional stress.

  6. Bend at your knees: Bending from your back can cause extra stress on the discs in your spine. When picking up something even as light as your child, bend at your knees. 

  7. Find a good mattress: Everyone needs a good mattress to sleep on.  You are worth it! You spend ⅓ of your life sleeping. Sleep is when your body heals.

  8. Hydrate: Drink plenty of water. Water is essential for your tissue hydration and strength.

  9. Don't prop your head forward or fall asleep on the sofa: This strains your spine, muscles, and nervous system.

  10. Eat healthy: Be kind to your body in your everyday food choices.  Fresh healthy food helps your body heal itself. I was unstable under NUCCA care until I was tested for IGG delayed Gut food allergies and eliminated those foods from my life. I went from needing to be aligned 2 times a week, to holding my alignments from 4-6 months at a time. It was a miracle for me. 

  11. Get your spine checked after your other body care appointments: When possible, schedule your check up with us after your other body care appointments.  If you are going to your dentist, hair stylist or massage therapist, be gentle with your neck. Having your head in a stressed position for a length of time or having it manipulated can cause your spine to misalign. 

Following these pointers will help you hold your adjustments longer and thrive sooner.