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Chiropractic Care After Stroke

Published Date: 
November 23, 2022
Categories:
A stethoscope, and a sign that says "stroke".

Stroke is a serious medical emergency that can be fatal. Chiropractic care after a stroke can help with survivors’ recovery.

How Can Chiropractic Care Help With Stroke Recovery? 

A stroke is a serious medical condition that can lead to long-term disability and even death. According to the American Stroke Association, strokes are the fifth leading cause of death in the United States.

There are two types of stroke cases: hemorrhagic and ischemic. Bleeding inside the brain causes hemorrhagic strokes, while an ischemic stroke is caused by something blocking a blood vessel to the brain.

As most people know, brain injury from a stroke can be devastating. It can cause significant problems with brain function, including paralysis, loss of speech, and even death. Recovery from a stroke is possible, but it takes time, effort, and often outside help.

One type of outside help that can be extremely beneficial for a stroke survivor is chiropractic care. Chiropractors are trained to identify and correct misalignments in the spine, which can help improve nerve function and reduce pain for a stroke patient.

Causes of Strokes

Many different things can cause a person to have a stroke. Some of the more common causes include:

  • Family history of stroke: Your risk of stroke increases if you have a family history of the condition. This is because certain lifestyle factors and medical conditions tend to run in families. If you have a family member who has had a stroke, it's important to be aware of your risk factors and take steps to reduce that risk.
  • High blood pressure: High blood pressure is one of the major risk factors for stroke, and people with high blood pressure are more likely to have a stroke than those with normal blood pressure. If you have high blood pressure, it is important to control it and to make sure that it does not become too high.
  • Smoking: Smoking does increase your risk of stroke. Smokers are about twice as likely to have a stroke as nonsmokers.
  • Diabetes: Diabetes increases your risk of stroke. A stroke occurs when blood flow to the brain is blocked and can cause serious damage or even death. Diabetes can damage blood vessels, making them more likely to become blocked. If you have diabetes, it's important to control your blood sugar levels and take steps to prevent stroke.
  • Heart disease: Heart disease is one of the leading causes of strokes.
  • Obesity: Obesity is a major risk factor for stroke. Being obese doubles your risk of having a stroke. And the more obese you are, the greater your risk. There are several reasons why obesity increases your risk of stroke. First, obesity can lead to high blood pressure, a major risk factor for stroke. Second, obesity can cause changes in the structure of your blood vessels, making them more likely to rupture or become blocked. Finally, obesity increases the level of inflammation in your body, which can damage blood vessels and lead to stroke.
  • Sedentary lifestyle: Not moving your body enough daily increases your risk of stroke. 
A chalkboard with the following information: "Know The Stroke Signs & Symptoms: Face dropping, Arm Weakness, Speech Difficulty, Time to call 911."

Signs of Trouble

If you think someone may be having a stroke, it is essential to act F.A.S.T.:

  • Face: Check for facial drooping. Does one side of their face droop? Is it numb? Ask the person to smile. Is their smile crooked?
  • Arms: Check for arm weakness. Does one arm feel numb or weak? Ask them to hold both arms out in front of them. Does one arm drift? 
  • Speech: Check for speech problems. Is speech hard to understand, slurred, or absent? Ask the person to repeat simple sentences like “The grass is green.”
  • Time: If the person shows any of these symptoms, time is critical. Call 911 or the emergency medical services (EMS) number immediately.

It is important to remember that these are only warning signs of stroke and that not all strokes will present with all of these symptoms. If you think someone may be having a stroke, it is always best to err on the side of caution and call 911 immediately.

Can Chiropractic Care Help Stroke Patients?

While there is no definitive treatment for strokes, chiropractic care may be able to help. Chiropractic adjustment can help improve blood flow and reduce inflammation, which is important in the recovery from a stroke.

In addition, chiropractic treatment can help to address some of the secondary effects of a stroke, such as pain, headaches, and dizziness. Chiropractic care is non-invasive and has few side effects, making it a safe and effective treatment option for stroke patients.

A man is getting chiropractic care after a stroke.

What Chiropractic Adjustments Can Be done?

There are a few different types of chiropractic adjustment that can be helpful for stroke recovery. 

One is called the Activator Method. This involves using a small hand-held device to deliver a gentle impulse to the affected area of the spine. This can help to reduce nerve irritation and improve function.

Another type of chiropractic manipulation that can be helpful for a stroke patient is called the Cranial Release Technique. This involves gentle head and neck manipulation and can help to improve blood flow and reduce pressure on the brain.

Finally, there is the Spinal Decompression Technique. This chiropractic spinal manipulation technique involves gently stretching the spine. This can help remove pressure from the spinal cord and nerves and improve blood flow.

All of these chiropractic manipulation techniques are gentle and safe and can be very helpful in stroke recovery. If you or a loved one has suffered a stroke, consider talking to a chiropractor about how these adjustments can help.

Conclusion

There are many risk factors for stroke, and some of them, like high blood pressure, can be controlled through lifestyle changes and medication. However, other risk factors cannot be changed, like family history or age. If you struggle to manage your stroke risk factors, you may want to consider chiropractic treatment.

Dr. Darren Faherty D.C.

In 2004, Dr. Darren Faherty graduated with a Bachelors of Science degree in Biology from UWEC - University of Wisconsin Eau Claire. Dr. Darren continued education at the highly esteemed University of Western States (formerly Western States Chiropractic College) where he obtained his chiropractic degree in 2007. He has been helping people recover from injuries and return to their normal lifestyles ever since.

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