Your spine is critical to your overall health. So a spinal adjustment might be just what you need if you’ve been feeling aches and pains lately. People who take responsibility for their own health and well-being know that spinal care is another important part of their overall health.

When you have a well-adjusted spine and you also are active, your strong muscles help to keep your spine positioned in alignment. But if your spine is already out of alignment, and you are still active with your fitness, you may be doing more damage to your spine, and that can cause you more pain.

The mind-body connection is important for balance, coordination, spatial awareness, and athletic performance. The spine is home to all of your major nerve branches off of the spinal cord. Therefore, it acts as the internet of your body, sending and receiving messages from the body to the brain.

You may have already read our article, Top 10 Acupressure Points for Pain Relief, so you know how to take care of your own pain with subtle pressure. A chiropractor is going to do the same thing for you by helping to relieve pain with subtle movements of your body to produce a state of balance for the spine.

Your body will let you know when something is wrong, diseased, or in pain. With the feedback from your body, you can make better choices for your health. Having a spine that is unadjusted is like having a kink in a garden hose; the water just isn’t getting through.

In a study of chiropractic spinal adjustment and the effects that it has on the body’s functioning, researchers found that an adjustment that stimulated the sympathetic nervous system will ’cause a reduction in the skin blood flow which can be detected by measuring the skin surface temperature.’

This shows that a chiropractic adjustment is able to affect the activity of the sympathetic nervous system. ‘These results illustrate that the blood flow through the fingertips can be affected by specific adjustments to the spine, and, further, that the response varies, depending on the location of the adjustment.’

Dr. J. Anya Harris, founder of Crystalign Chiropractic in Asheville, NC, addresses spinal subluxation correction in a unique and profound way: “It’s important for Doctors to compassionately address body, mind and spirit for healing to occur on all levels and in all ways.”

Here are 5 Signs Your Body Needs a Spinal Adjustment:

1. Your body needs a spinal adjustment if you have chronic aches and pains

You can see a primary care physician, an orthopedic specialist or a chiropractor for your back pain, but one study found that patients who saw chiropractors were more satisfied by the cost and quality of care that they had received than those patients who saw other doctors.

You may have read about natural painkillers in our article 15 Natural Remedies That Can Replace Painkillers. And if you are a frequent user of painkillers, it is definitely time to see a chiropractor for a spinal adjustment.

Check the soles of your shoes to see if you are wearing down the rubber unevenly. You may have one leg that is shorter than the other or you may be walking differently to compensate for a pain or injury to your leg, foot, ankle, hip or spine.

Continuing to move your body when it is out of alignment will only make the problem worse.

2. Your body needs a spinal adjustment if you have a sudden sharp pain

An acute pain can stop you in your tracks during a workout. A shin splint or a sharp pain in your side indicates that something is not right with your body. A spinal adjustment can help balance your body so that tendons, ligaments, and muscles are able to move in their correct positioning.

3. Your body needs a spinal adjustment if you have an active lifestyle

Physically fit people will benefit tremendously from a spinal adjustment. As we have already mentioned, when you have a spine that is correctly aligned and you then work to strengthen the muscles of your back, your spine stays properly where it should.

4. Your body needs a spinal adjustment if you do repetitive motions through the day

Hobbies, work and household chores can all require you to move in the same way, over and over again for long periods of time. The same motions repeated without changing position can have negative affects on your joints and posture.

Sitting all day without multiple stretch breaks is not only uncomfortable, it is bad for your spine. Long periods of sitting can cause muscles in the spine and abdomen to weaken, which makes injuries more likely.

5. Your body needs a spinal adjustment if you have frequent headaches

Headaches can be caused by many problems, including diet, medications and vascular difficulties but having a spine out of adjustment is another possible cause of your headaches. When the muscles of the neck, shoulders and upper back need an adjustment, it can cause tension and migraine headaches.

Dr. Harris commented that the most common physical symptoms from patients include: radiating pain, a need to always “pop” your neck and back, stiff range of motion, muscular weakness or spasms, pinpointed pain in the spine upon movement, loss of grip strength, sluggish digestion, brain fog, leg pain, intense menstrual cramps, numbness and tingling in hands or feet,  pregnancy related pain, sinus trouble, and headaches can all be traced back to a spinal subluxation.