Chiropractic is a philosophy, science and art. The philosophy of chiropractic is built upon the constructs of vitalism, holism, conservatism, naturalism and rationalism. It provides context for the application of science and art.

Health is a state of optimal physical, emotional and social well-being. Central to the philosophy of chiropractic is the principle that life is intelligent. This innate intelligence strives to maintain a state of health through adaptation mechanisms. The nervous system is recognized as an avenue for these self-regulating processes. Interference with neurological function can impede these mechanisms, disrupt homeostatic balance and adversely impact health. Chiropractic posits that subluxation of the spinal column and other articulations can affect nervous system function and the expression of health, which may result in symptoms, infirmity and disease.

The understanding of the subluxation complex continues to progress from D.D. Palmer’s early writings about misalignment of vertebrae and other articulating structures to include additional anatomical, physiological, biomechanical, chemical and biopsychosocial factors.

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