Can a Chiropractor help arthritis?

Can a Chiropractor help arthritis? Part 1

As a Chiropractor in Kitchener Ontario we see many patients with arthritic pain. We are continually providing exceptional care for those looking for the best Chiropractor In Kitchener. Arthritis or inflammation to the joint is the number one cause of disability, over 50 million Americans have some form of arthritis. That number equates to 1 in every 5 adults and as obesity continues to rise so will arthritis. These numbers would certainly be similar across Canada.

There are over 60 different types of arthritis according to However, a simpler way differentiate the types of arthritis is to classify them as degenerative, inflammatory (rheumatoid arthritis), infectious (bacterial, viral or fungal) and metabolic (uric acid accumulation or gout).

Degenerative, or osteoarthritis (OA) is the most common type of arthritis and occurs as a result of wear and tear on the joints. Over time the cartilage that provides a frictionless cushion on the ends of bones wears away. The bones begin to rub against each other causing pain, swelling and stiffness. As the osteoarthritis progresses, range of motion in the joint is decreased, muscle strength is lost and pain becomes chronic.

Risk Factors for Arthritis

The risk factors for getting osteoarthritis are age (greater than 40), gender (women are 2 times as likely and women over 50 are the most common demographic), obesity (for every 1 lb there is 4lbs place on the knees and 6 lbs on the hips), previous joint injury (meniscal or ACL injury for the knee or FAI for the hip) and genetic (gout).
It should be noted that there is no evidence that cold or wet weather causes or worsens arthritis. It is common for someone with osteoarthritis to experience pain or stiffness with changes in the weather. However, this is a result of nerve fibres in the capsules of affected joints that are sensitive to changes in atmospheric pressure.

Chiropractic Care and Arthritis

According to Dr. Robert Hayden, spokesperson for the American Chiropractic Association, chiropractors focus on the relationship between “structure and function” and are perfectly suited to manage patients with arthritis.

In an article posted on, Dr. Hayden describes how an inflamed joint in the knee can alter the way a patient walks causing compensatory pain in the ankle, hip and low back. Even if a chiropractor never touches an arthritic joint, treating the surrounding muscles, tendons and fascia can significantly reduce overall pain. Research has shown that a lot of pain experience by patients with OA is caused by the muscles and tendons that surround the affected joint. Therefore, providing exercises, mobilizations and acupuncture can be an effective means of reducing pain.

Is Chiropractic Care Safe for Patients with Arthritis?

According to Scott Haldeman, a medical doctor and neurologist practising in California as well as a trained chiropractor. Chiropractic care for neck or back pain that is caused by osteoarthritis is “one of the safest therapies you can use”.

Where Dr. Haldeman advises caution is when the arthritis is not degenerative and is caused by an inflammatory or infectious disease. Most healthcare professionals agree with Dr. Haldeman that conservative management; including, chiropractic, physiotherapy and massage should not be involved with inflammatory or infectious arthritis.

Dr. Hayden, agrees that treating inflamed joints should be “off limits”. These types of arthritis need to be treated by medical doctors, and should not be adjusted. However, Dr. Hayden states that chiropractors do more than adjust and some of the symptoms can be managed with soft tissue therapy, mobilizations, acupuncture and exercise.

If you’re looking for the best Chiropractor In Kitchener Ontario for your treatment and care please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us today. We look forward to hearing from you.