How Is NUCCA Different from General Chiropractic?

This is a great question, and it is usually one of the first things a patient will ask. Understanding the difference between NUCCA and general chiropractic starts with one very basic discrepancy. While general chiropractic involves popping, twisting, or cracking of the spine, NUCCA is a more specific and gentle adjustment.

What makes NUCCA such a precise procedure? The idea is that focus is placed on the C1 and C2 vertebrae at the top of the neck—the upper cervical spine. When this part of the neck is in alignment, the rest of the spine should follow suit. However, this is a very sensitive area of the spine calling for precise adjustments. Therefore, very specific calculations are made to ensure the correct realignment is provided.

Because upper cervical adjustments are so gentle, the effects are often more long-lasting. The body doesn’t fight back against gentle pressure as it does if confronted with a sudden jerking motion. When an adjustment stays in place longer, the body has more time to heal from the damage caused by the misalignment, and the patient enjoys paying for fewer visits.

The NUCCA Process

NUCCA starts with an examination, patient history, and specialized x-rays that reveal the exact location and degree of a misalignment. This allows the practitioner to know how to position the patient, where to stand, and the location to place the gentle pressure for optimal results. Over time, it may be necessary to take some more x-rays. This will show how well the adjustments are holding and can help determine a continued course of maintenance so that adjustments are provided only as needed.

Imagine you had a water leak in your home. Would you prefer the plumber search for the specific location of the leak and fix only that or make adjustments to every pipe in the home? This helps to illustrate the difference between general chiropractic and the precision of upper cervical care.

Even if you have had a bad experience with general chiropractic in the past, I encourage you to give NUCCA a try. You’ll be amazed at the difference and just how much can be accomplished in even one adjustment.

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NUCCA Chiropractic Care

What is NUCCA
The National Upper Cervical Chiropractic Association (NUCCA) is an organization of Doctors of Chiropractic dedicated to patient care, education and research.

Spinal health care using the NUCCA procedures focuses on detecting and correcting a small misalignment in the upper neck area. Gentle, non-invasive adjustments don’t require any turning, twisting or popping.

Your upper cervical spine (neck) area influences all areas of your body. Injury or chronic misalignments can cause headaches, migraines, neck pain, low back pain, weakness and more.

The NUCCA technique is currently offered by less than 1% of all the Doctors of Chiropractic.

Before the NUCCA procedure can be performed, I will sit down with you and discuss your history and symptoms. If I determine that NUCCA can help, a thorough examination and x-rays will be done. A complete report of your findings and treatment options will be discussed. 

First adjustment
Precision x-rays are taken of the spine before any treatment begins. The adjustment is performed with the patient lying on their side and the doctor applying a very light pressure behind the earlobe. A full demonstration can be seen on the video above.

The NUCCA procedure can be summed up with 5 major distinctions as compared to traditional Chiropractic:

  • Gentle adjustment to the neck with no turning, twisting or popping.
  • Precision x-rays to measure before and after corrections.
  • Total body posture and balance improvement
  • Greater stability to the spine
  • Hold adjustments longer with fewer visits

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