- Babies and Children
- Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
- Joint Disease
- Low Back Pain
- Tension Headaches
The Gonstead Method of Chiropractic
Dr. Clarence Gonstead was a chiropractor who practiced in Mt. Horeb, Wisconsin for over 50 years until his death in 1978. Before becoming a chiropractor he was an engineer, and he applied the principles of engineering to the spine.
Dr. Gonstead developed a system of chiropractic treatment based on the biomechanics of the spine and foundation principle. His thought was that each vertebra was supported by the one beneath it and the pelvis supported the entire spine. Dr. Gonstead therefore looked at the entire spine as one working unit and not independent vertebra. He developed a method for taking full-spine x-rays, so he could have the full picture of a spine. He also developed an instrument to find areas of subluxation by comparing the skin temperature on either side of the spine. The instrument has dual probes, which are run along the skin and are heat sensitive, capable of detecting a temperature difference of 0.02˚F.
Every vertebral level of the spine has a set of nerves associated with it, which exit from the spinal cord and out from between the vertebra on both sides. When there is pressure on a nerve from a subluxation (a misaligned vertebra) the affected nerve will become inflamed and will have a slightly higher temperature. He taught other chiropractors to find the exact problem in the spine by: analyzing full spine x-rays to look for subtle structural misalignments, using a dual probe instrument to look for inflammation to the nerve roots, and using their hands to feel for swelling, muscle tightness and decreased joint movement. He also trained chiropractors in biomechanics so they could understand the difference between a subluxation and a compensation in the spine. Correcting a subluxation corrects the problem causing the pain or dysfunction. Trying to correct a compensation will give either no relief or short term relief to a problem in the spine.