Another health problem that chiropractic can help with? Snoring. Yes, snoring!
I get a lot of complaints about snoring (usually from the spouse of the patient and not the patient themselves!) and I wanted to share the ways in which chiropractic care can help with snoring/sleep apnea/sinus issues. Snoring and sleep apnea also lead to other more serious problems, including lack of oxygen and periods of non-breathing in the night, so it is important to get a handle on this health condition!
Sleep apnea and snoring can be caused by a number of factors, including sleeping position, weight gain, inflammation, dental structure, and more, but I am going to discuss the neuro-musculoskeletal contributors to this problem, and how chiropractic can help.
The mouth, nose, and throat are surrounded by multiple structures, including many muscles (as seen below), ligaments, and lymphatic and blood vessels, and are also backed by the vertebrae of the cervical spine (neck). Oftentimes, there are imbalances and blockages in these structures. Cervical vertebrae can become misaligned, which places excess pressure on some of the soft tissues and air passageways. Musculoskeletal imbalances in the head and neck also contribute to lymphatic (waste) drainage blockage, which results in the sinuses improperly draining or getting congested, which is also a causative factor in snoring. Chiropractic adjustments aid in balancing the musculoskeletal system and relieving pressure on the air passageways.
Chiropractic care also optimizes nervous system function which positively affects breathing patterns, since breathing is under nervous system control. I also check the hyoid bone, a small bone in the front of the neck that often gets shifted due to muscular imbalance, thus also possibly compressing structures housed in the neck. Cranial bone balance is important as well since the cranial bones are highly related to breathing, sinus elimination, and neck alignment. With muscle testing and chiropractic techniques, we also work on cranial bone balance.
As you can see, we could spend a lot of time just on checking for and treating things in the head and neck, therefore making snoring/sleep apnea another health condition for holistic chiropractic care!