_Mountain View, Missouri (West Plains / Willow Springs / Winona / Cabool / Summersville) ---- Spinal Decompression Doctor, Russell Schierling, presents another blog article on Spinal Decompression Therapy.

Decompression -vs- Traction
Is There a Difference?

_Many patients ask me about the difference between Traction and Spinal Decompression Therapy. Although all Spinal Decompression tables are traction-based, they are not all merely traction tables.  There really is a difference!

Traditional traction has been around for decades.  In the "old days" people would lie in hospital beds for weeks, while weights supplied a perpetual traction force to the discs.  This was found to cause as many problems as it helped.   Next came the simple traction tables that used cheap electric motors with a rope attached to something that could be best described as a modified horse harness to pull on the spine.  These winches were not much different than what you would find on the front of your 4-wheeler or pickup truck.  The latest generation of Traction Tables are more cleverly disguised.  Just remember that no matter how large and "hi-tech" the unit may look, traction machines pull on the spine in only one direction. 

The problem with traction is that it just pulls and pulls and pulls, and after a few minutes your body says "hey, I’m being stretched!"  It reacts by tightening or even spasming the surrounding muscles (aka "guarding" or "splinting"). This prevents the disc spaces from opening, staying open, drawing in fluid, and healing properly.  It is not enough to simply distract the disc, the real benefit comes through the pull / release pumping action of the unit.  No simple traction device has ever shown before-and-after MRI’s where there was increased disc height or a visible reduction of a DISC HERNIATION.

Spinal Decompression Units not only pull the spine, they can actually "sense" how much force the body is pulling back with.  The unit's computer puts this information together and can actually decrease the amount of pull when needed ---- or in some cases, shut down the machine completely down if that is required.

Our table utilizes a microchip-controlled, computerized feedback system that senses if your body begins to spasm or resist against the decompressive force. Essentially your body is being tricked into not realizing that it is being "pulled " (Decompressed).  Thus, it will not typically cause the back to spasm like traction tables frequently do. That is why before and after comparison MRI’s of Decompression patients have actually shown objective improvements in disc height, reduction of Spinal Disc Herniations (some of them complete reductions), and reduced nerve impingement.  You will see this in the following video.

Spinal Decompression Therapy has become increasingly popular due to the fact that it works! This technology has spared many people from DANGEROUS SPINAL SURGERIES. Because of this, many manufacturers and doctors have jumped on the "Decompression Bandwagon".

Many of these so called “Spinal Decompression” units are just traction machines that have gone through a makeover of sorts to refit them with a lot of pseudo-technology.  You know; colored lights, computer screens, digital readouts ----- all of the pretty bells, and whistles.  Many of these machines are twice the size they really need to be.  

None of these machines use a microchip-controlled computerized feedback system.  None of them have RESEARCH behind them showing that they can actually reverse some cases of DISC HERNIATIONS.  I am a huge believer in using technology that is backed by RESEARCH!

Traction -vs- Spinal Decompression Therapy is fairly easy to understand.  When you think of traction, think of William Wallace about to be "stretched" (drawn & quartered) at the end of the movie Braveheart.   When you think of Spinal Decompression Therapy, think Schierling Chiropractic, LLC. We have the RESEARCH as well as PATIENT PROOF that Spinal Decompression Therapy helps many people!


Nearly 25 years ago, Chiropractic Radiologist Terry Yochum DC, DACBR, FCCR, FICC of the Rocky Mountain Chiropractic Radiological Center co-authored the definitive radiology textbook still being used in virtually all chiropractic schools (Essentials in Skeletal Radiology).  I used the first edition back when I started at Logan College of Chiropractic in 1988.  In fact, the book is so impressive that several medical schools have used this text book as well.  Listen as Dr. Yochum describes the pre and post MRI findings of a fellow chiropractor who had sought his advice concerning a severely herniated disc.  By the way, I personally know some of the people involved in this (I studied under Dr. Michael Barry ---- Dr. Yochum's then-associate).

If you have tried more effective treatments than you can shake a stick at, and are sick and tired of putting up with the pain, pick up the phone and call Tracy at (417) 934-6337.  Schedule a completely free, no-obligation consultation to meet with Doctor Schierling and determine whether or not YOU MIGHT BE A GOOD CANDIDATE for Spinal Decompression Therapy!


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