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Manipulation Vs. Adjustment

When looking into chiropractic care, you’ve probably come across a variety of terms relating to options, techniques and approaches. One of the most commonly confused set of terms that come up in the chiropractic world are manipulation and adjustment. What’s the difference? Why should you care?


Manipulation relates to a force that is introduced over multiple spinal segments that is intended to mobilize the area. Instead of isolating a specific joint or vertebrae, the goal of manipulation is to provide for global movement.

Manipulation is more of a “one-size-fits-all” motion that acts like an aspirin that’s applied to all patients. Patients are manipulated on one side, then the other, the back and the neck are both treated. Yes, manipulation leads to relief, however, because care is not taken to isolate specific problem areas, the relief is generally short-lived.


Unlike manipulation’s blanket approach, adjustments are specific forms of manipulation that work to target and treat problem areas.

Skilled chiropractors perform detailed examinations and assessments to palpate specific joints to determine conditions that could exist and how to proceed. Based on the initial assessment, a chiropractor can create a treatment plan based around adjustments of specific vertebrae that produce individual results, not blanket results.

Why it Matters to You

You are likely seeking chiropractic care for a specific problem area. Whether you’re suffering from migraines, back pain, a chronic pain condition, sciatic pain or something else, you need relief that fits your individual need, you don’t want something that treats you the same as every other patient. This is where a chiropractor who practices targeted adjustments is essential.

You need care that meets your needs…that will lead to the results you are looking for to live a pain-free life. Contact LeVan Chiropractic to set up a consultation and to learn more about how chiropractic adjustments could benefit you today.