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Chiropractic Care for Alleviating Parkinson’s Disease Symptoms

Published Date: 
September 22, 2023
A man with Parkinson's disease holding his wrist while trying to feed himself with a spoon.

Parkinson's disease is a progressive neurological disorder, which means that it worsens over time. It drastically impacts the central nervous system, increasing with each phase of the disease.

There is no cure for Parkinson's, but there are treatments that make the disease more manageable, like chiropractic treatment. Chiropractors provide treatments that benefit the nervous system, muscles, and joints, all of which are affected by Parkinson's. It helps relieve chronic pain intensity and makes movement easier by increasing flexibility.

How Chiropractic Care Can Potentially Help Parkinson's Patients

There are several ways that chiropractic care helps Parkinson's patients.

Chiropractors adjust spinal misalignment, removing friction and irritation, so nerves can function properly and communicate as they should. This improves the quality of life and can contribute to pain management.

Chiropractic care also helps with muscle rigidity which is an issue for people with Parkinson's. Most people experience spasms and muscle contractions. Chiropractic treatment, including massage therapy, is excellent for easing spasms and preventing pain symptoms and discomfort.

Ongoing chiropractic treatments help patients increase their muscle strength. It also allows them to move more freely, think clearly, and feel energized. Chiropractic care can target a specific symptom or help Parkinson's patients have a better quality of life and continue daily activities.

Relieve Back Pain

Low back pain is a common symptom for people with Parkinson's. Chiropractic care is a gentle, non-invasive treatment option that helps to align the lumbar spine and other issues that lead to lower back pain. It also reduces inflammation and improves the function of the central nervous system. Maintaining good spinal health is extremely helpful for easing back pain caused by Parkinson's.

Older man with back pain walking with support from his wife.

Reduce Muscle Stiffness

Muscle rigidity is relieved because chiropractic care realigns the body and improves flexibility. Patients with muscle stiffness get a better range of motion. It also increases circulation and relaxes the body.

Improve Nerve Function

Chiropractic treatments have a significant impact on the nervous system. Therapies that target the nervous system include soft tissue manipulation, spinal decompression, and more. Chiropractic care targets spinal health, which plays a significant role in the body's nervous system. This has a positive impact on a variety of issues that can be affected by Parkinson's, including:

  • Cognition
  • Heart rate
  • Breathing
  • Digestion
  • Musculoskeletal pain
  • Muscle cramps
  • Flexibility
  • Headaches
  • Sleep
  • Energy levels
  • Balance and coordination

Benefits of Chiropractic Care for Parkinson's Disease Symptoms

Using chiropractic care for treating the common symptoms of Parkinson's disease is safe. It helps some patients reduce their reliance on medication for managing symptoms. It might also prolong symptoms. Even if someone eventually develops various symptoms of Parkinson's, they can enjoy a relatively pain-free life for longer.

Research Supporting the Use of Chiropractic Care for Parkinson's Patients

The benefits of chiropractic care for treating Parkinson's are research-based.

Man with Parkinson's disease does upper body strength exercises with chiropractor.

One case study involved a 68-year-old woman with Parkinson's. She experienced tremors, poor range of motion in her neck, fatigue, and lower back pain. Chiropractic care helped to relieve these symptoms.

In another case, an 81-year-old man diagnosed with Parkinson's 12 years earlier sought chiropractic care for his stooped posture and shuffling gait. He used a walker and had a tremor in his right hand. Chiropractic care helped with both of these issues.

Importance of Interdisciplinary Care in Managing Parkinson's Disease

Treating Parkinson's using an interdisciplinary or multidisciplinary approach is one of the most effective ways to help patients. When a team works together, patients can achieve the highest quality of life and have resources that target specific symptoms common among Parkinson's patients.

In addition to chiropractors, other health professionals, treatment options, and complementary therapies that can help a person with a movement disorder like Parkinson's might include:

Senior man with shoulder pain talks to a chiropractor.
  • Neurology
  • Physiotherapy
  • Occupational therapy
  • Speech therapy
  • Dietary therapy
  • Clinical psychology
  • Social work

Dr. Eric Neumann D.C.

Dr. Eric Neumann grew up in Alberta, Canada where he majored in Chemistry at the University of Calgary. During his time at University, he obtained licensure as a Massage Therapist. It was clear that hands-on healing would be his calling. After suffering multiple sport-related injuries he became interested in Chiropractic. Dr. Neumann graduated from Western States Chiropractic College in 2009. He has since specialized in the treatment and management of acute spinal injuries.

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