“I can take a deep breath, I feel my sinuses have finally opened up and feel more calm after an adjustment” states Pamela Peterson owner of I heart Pilates after her first NUCCA adjustment at Alpha Spine Center. Most patients often feel this calmness and ability to breathe more deeply after their adjustment. Ever wondered why that is?
The Scientific Explanation.
The central nervous system has a subsystem called the autonomic nervous system. The autonomic nervous system (ANS) is responsible for automatic or involuntary bodily functions that we do not need to perform consciously or actively, such as breathing. The ANS is responsible for controlling the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous system response. The sympathetic nervous system (SNS) is responsible for the “Fight or Flight” response in which the body gets prepared for danger. It does so by dilating the lungs for rapid breathing causing the heart to beat faster and stronger, increases blood circulation to the muscles and increases the adrenaline rush in your body so it can either fight the danger or run away from the danger. Where as, the parasympathetic nervous system (PNS) is responsible for conserving and restoring energy through bodily functions like digestion.
Definition: Central Nervous system: Consists of the brain and spinal cord, which is the integrating and control center.
How does a NUCCA adjustment affect the Parasympathetic Nervous System?
The parasympathetic nervous system stems from the level of the brainstem (Upper cervical: C1 and C2) and sacral region of the spine and the sympathetic nervous system stems from the thoracic and lumbar region of the spine. Therefore, if the nerves in the brainstem and sacral region were activated then a parasympathetic response should illicit. This was proven by Welch and Boone published in 2008, in which they found a decrease in diastolic blood pressure in subjects that received an upper cervical adjustment. So the pressure in the heart decreased further as it filled up with blood. Indicating that activation of the parasympathetic nervous system upon an upper cervical adjustment.
Definition: Diastolic pressure: minimum arterial pressure during relaxation and dilation of the ventricles during filling of blood in the heart.
The scientific explanation helps understand the feeling of being relaxed, calm and the ability to take a deep breath after a NUCCA adjustment at the Alpha Spine Center. If you know a loved one in constant “fight or flight”, stress or sympathetic mode that can’t seem to dial down and be calm; refer them to Alpha Spine Center to determine if they qualify for NUCCA care.
Methods of evaluation of autonomic nervous system function. Zygmunt, A., Stanczyk, J. Arch Med Sci. 2010; 6(1): 11-18.
Upper Cervical Subluxation Complex. A Review of the Chiropractic and Medical Literature. Eriksen, K. Lippincott Williams & Wilkins. 2004