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As opioids continue to raise concerns, more people are seeking safer therapies for spine care. A study published May 2018 in JAMA Network Open validates a common non-drug therapy—chiropractic care.

Researchers found that military members who added chiropractic care had better low back pain relief and function than those who only had usual medical care.

Military members perform a physically and psychologically demanding job—and you may assume conservative care, such as chiropractic, may not be enough to ease their pain. But another ,published in the October 2017 Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics, showed that chiropractic delivered meaningful relief to female veterans with low back pain.

While the study focused on the military, civilians can also benefit from its outcomes.

Is Chiropractic for me?

Whether you’re a service member or civilian, chances are that you’ll experience low back pain at some point in your life. As pain drugs draw increasing criticism, more people are seeking safer therapies for spine care. 

Three strategies can help connect you with the right back pain treatment:

  1. Make your treatment preferences known to your doctor (“If possible, I’d like to try a non-drug treatment like chiropractic before moving on to a prescription drug”).

  2. Always ask the actual provider about the benefits and risks of a treatment. (You wouldn't ask your dentist about brain surgery would you?)

  3. Don’t be afraid to ask your chiropractor about what therapies are backed by research.

Spinal manipulation has been more thoroughly researched in the civilian population than in the veteran population. In the civilian population, spinal manipulation has been shown to effectively treat low back pain. In fact, the American College of Physicians Clinical Practice Guidelines included spinal manipulation among the recommended non-drug treatments for low back pain.

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