Chiropractic comes from the Greek word chiropraktikos, meaning "effective treatment by hand". Chiropractic is a health care profession based on the premise that the relationship between structure and function in the body is a significant health factor and that relationships between the spinal column and the nervous system are important to the health and well-being of an individual.
Improper motion of the moving bones of the spine is called a "subluxation". This can irritate nerves and interfere with their signals thus compromising the function of affected tissues and organs.
A chiropractic adjustment is extremely safe and involves a quick thrust that helps add motion to spinal joints that aren't moving properly. The sound heard during the adjustment is the gas and fluids around the spinal joints shifting. An adjustment does not always produce a noise.
This is often due to either significant muscle tightness or the person having a hard time relaxing during their adjustments. Some adjusting techniques are designed to put motion through the spine in a way that does not produce the sound at all.
The objective of the chiropractic adjustment is to reduce the subluxation which results in an increased range of motion, reduced nerve irritability, reduced muscle spasm, reduced pain and improved function.
Under normal circumstances, adjustments do not hurt. Most patients look forward to their treatments. Minor discomfort may occur during the adjustment which lasts only seconds.