What is Gonstead?

What is Gonstead?

gonstead chiropractic

The practice of Gonstead Chiropractic was developed during the 1900s. The great thing about Gonstead is that there are many methods used by chiropractors to make spinal adjustments, joint dysfunctions, and subluxation complexes, but Gonstead has been extensively researched. The first adjustment given was in 1895 by Daniel D. Palmer. It was just years later that the Gonstead method was developed.

Since most methods are named after the chiropractor that developed it, you should know that Gonstead came from Clarence S. Gonstead who did extensive clinical research. Clarence also found what is now a world-famous Gonstead clinic. It is located in Horeb, Wisconsin. The Gonstead method is the most complete of any chiropractic method. Through fifty-five years of practice, over four million adjustments, and its biomechanical analysis, the Gonstead method is available for doctors of chiropractic today.

Not all chiropractors use this practice today because it requires more time. Mastering and analyzing Gonstead, like any method, takes time and practice in order to deliver a specific adjustment. The practice of Gonstead Chiropractic is above what is normal for most chiropractors. To make a spinal assessment with Gonstead, a chiropractor will make a thorough analysis of the spine. Going through a checklist there are five points used to determine the presence of the vertebral subluxation complex.

  1. Visualization: Through pure observation and visualization your chiropractor can cross-reference all the other things. Slight changes or even drastic changes in posture and the way you move could be an indicator of problems.

  2. Instrumentation: Nervoscope is the type of instrument that is used in the Gonstead System. This instrument has the ability to detect if there are distributions of heat that are uneven along the spine. If there is unevenness detected, it can indicate there are inflammation and nerve pressure.

  3. Static Palpation: In a stationary or static position, your chiropractor will palpate or feel your spine. In this process, your chiropractor is looking for swelling, tenderness or anything that appears abnormal through texture and tightness of the muscles in your back.

  4. Motion Palpation: While having you move and bend at different angles, the chiropractor with feel the spine. During this process, the chiropractor determines if each part of your spine moves easily or not.

  5. X-ray Analysis: Results from an x-ray will help your chiropractic doctor determine and envision what the structure of your spine looks like. It is through an x-ray that your doctor can tell if there are any misalignments, joint, and disc integrity or recent fractures that may be contributing to what the patient is going through.

Basic Principles

Every sturdy structure, including a human being, has a foundation. The pelvic girdle is how the human body’s foundation is formed. Just like any structure, a proper foundation is important for the structure to function properly. The foundation is what gives the structure durability and ability to withstand wear a long tie. When there is a change to the foundation, it can affect the entire structure and cause other problems and over time the damage will cause a collapse.

The pelvic girdle in our bodies, it made up of our hip bones and lower backbones of that back. It is when those parts are level, our bodies have the maximum amount of balance and stability in the spinal column. It is when there is any type of shift in the pelvic girdle or even in the bones that make up the spinal column through a tilt or rotation there will be a dramatic change in the body.

Misalignments that may occur in your spinal column or pelvic girdle can cause your discs in the vertebrae to experience pressure. Depending on what kind of condition the disc is in, it is key to what a patient’s health problem is. There are several ways that a vertebra can be misaligned. It is often from the cumulative effects of minor episodes, but it can also be from a single accident. Our bodies are amazing and can sometimes adjust itself when there is something misaligned. There are also times when aid from a chiropractic doctor is necessary to get properly aligned.

It is helpful to know that the discs in the spinal column are the pads between the vertebrae. Within the disc, it is made up of a spongy substance encompassed by fibers of cartilage. Misalignments of the vertebra cause uneven pressure on the disc, which makes it swell and protrude. Anytime you hear of a slipped, herniated or ruptured disc, it is because of swelling and protrusion.

A subluxation is when chiropractors determine there is pinching or compressing of nerves that go through a particular area. When these nerves become compressed they are inflamed and obstruct the transmission of impulses to the section of the body controlled by these nerves. This can be a very painful experience for a patient.

The fundamental part of the Gonstead Concept is that a chiropractor is able to not only recognize the misalignments but be able to correct them. We see when there is a misalignment in the spinal column, the body will try to keep the skeletons upright and straight. When our bodies do this on our own, it will overcompensate somewhere else which will then cause another vertebra to become misaligned.

When there are multiple misaligned vertebrae, it is not possible to adjust just one. This method will only provide temporary relief. For a more complete and results that will last, all of the vertebrae need to be adjusted for correct alignment.


The Gonstead Adjustment

Once there has been a complete analysis your chiropractor trained with the Gonstead method can make the necessary adjustments that you are in need of. When it comes to making an adjustment, there is a focus to make the adjustment as specific, precise and as accurate as possible. It is key to fix only the area that is experiencing problems. Meticulous moves will take place to make sure a bio-mechanically correct position takes place. The Gonstead doctor will perform an exact thrust to make the most accurate and painless adjustment possible. We want you to feel restored and hope to continue with optimal health by finding and making corrections to anything interrupting your nervous system caused by vertebral subluxation.


Who was Dr. Gonstead?

Dr. Clarence Selmer Gonstead was a chiropractor during the early to mid-1900s. He researched the methods necessary to understand bio-mechanical science when it comes to bone setting. Dr. Gonstead dedicated his life to this cause. Gonstead worked to change the technical skills that chiropractic graduates came out of school with. He created a logical and bio-mechanically sound system for practicing chiropractic. He had a special talent and ability to solve mechanical problems. Through practice and research, he was able to develop his own thoughts on subluxations, x-ray, and adjusting bones because of the empirical data he put together from his large practice. Without intending to, Gonstead created a new way of practicing chiropractics. Palmer School of Chiropractic adopted Gonstead’s technique in the early 60s and his method is continuing to be taught throughout chiropractic schools today.

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