What does a Chiropractor do? | TPM Chiropractic

Posted on: May 16th, 2022 by adminva | Categories: Uncategorized

Spinal Manipulation

Chiropractic is a profession, not a treatment. Every Chiropractor examines and treats in a different style. There are several variations of Chiropractic treatment, and TPM Chiropractors most commonly use a combination of techniques to best help patients meet their goals.

Prior to Chiropractic Treatment

Prior to treatment, a hands on exam is performed tailored to patient complaints. This may involve range of motion, orthopaedic testing and some neurological examinations. When the cause of the complaint is identified the best course of action will be explained, and one or more treatment techniques will be used. The primary adjusting techniques we use at TPM chiropractic are:

Chiropractic Treatment Techniques

Diversified– The trademark of this style of treatment is a hands on, fast pressure over a short distance through the joints, often resulting in a popping or cracking noise, with a change to pain and range of motion. Although the noise is interesting, it is not a measure of how effective the adjustment has been. This is probably the most common and widely used technique, therefore is the most familiar to patients

Sacro-Occipital technique (SOT)– SOT is based on the idea that there is a relationship between the pelvis and the skull, and changes in this relationship can impact the movement of the spine and the function of the nervous system. This is a very gentle treatment style, commonly using wedges or chocks placed underneath the pelvis to correct rotations, and increase stability.



Activator– An alternative to the traditional joint adjustment, in which a spring loaded hand held instrument (activator) is used to provide quick, low force impulses into specific joints to restore range of motion and neurological activity. The benefit of this technique is that the force is consistent every time, and because it is delivered so quickly, the body rarely has time to tighten to resist, so the process is effective and comfortable. The activator tool is often used for either older or younger patients where a lower force treatment is required.


Drop table (Thompson/TPT)- Another mechanically assisted technique, this time using a special table that has segments that lift up and drop down by about 2 cm. The aim of Drop table treatments is to increase range of motion in restricted joints, reduce muscle spasm and increase the neurological awareness of the area being adjusted. Drop table techniques are gentle, and because the drop segment increases the speed of the adjustment, it can be very effective with less pressure.


What’s that cracking Sound?

Some manual adjustments are commonly associated with a popping or cracking sound. This sound is from gas bubbles forming in the joint as the surfaces are separated quickly. These bubbles are visible on an MRI and hang around for a few minutes after the crack has occurred. This process is known as Tribonucleation. The cracking sound is not a measure of a successful adjustment, merely a byproduct of the quick movement of the joint.

Most Chiropractors will use a variety of techniques to restore proper range of motion to the joints of the body, with assorted soft tissue techniques to achieve the goals of reductions of pain and increase in function in their patients.

If you have any further questions, please contact Lachlan at TPM Chiropractic on (07) 4740 4516. 

Lachlan Goodacre, Chiropractor


Physiotherapy Townsville - The Physio Movement


     517 Flinders Street
Townsville City Qld 4810
     1300 TPM FIT or 4740 4516
Book Now
Book Now