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The doctor has available tools like the Deep Muscle Stimulator (DMS) for fascial therapy, a laser device for quicker healing, a SCENAR device for pain control and stimulation of acupuncture points without needles, IASTM tools for fascial therapy while the patient is moving on a BOSU or stability pad to increase range of motion, taping techniques, nutrition recommendations, other modalities, treatment tables (traction, relaxation, etc.) and, of course, the doctor will prescribe exercise therapy.

Standard ortho/neuro testing are complimented by the SFMA, FMS, OptoJump gait analysis and body composition analysis devices which are leading the field and are going to be tools you want to get familiar with. These are comprehensive assessments used to classify movement patterns, balance and weight management that can direct manual therapy, therapeutic lifestyle changes and exercise interventions. The FMS is being used to determine the greatest areas of movement deficiency, demonstrate limitations or asymmetries and eventually correlate these with an outcome.

The OptoJump gait system brings tremendous value to the modern chiropractic office. Computerized gait analysis can help guide treatment plans, exercise programs and improve balance. It can be used to assess a client's performance and physical condition; rapidly identify muscular deficiencies and measure tolerance to various work loads; help develop diversified training; check the results of clients training; examine the physical condition of a client after an injury, and develop specific actions for rehabilitation and checking progress.

There is a company called Total Health Company that provides software that allows the patient and doctor to interact online to improve outcomes for weight loss and healthy aging programs. This comprehensive body composition system provides trending of your patient's crucial biometrics: weight, lean mass, body fat, BMR and hydration levels. Chiropractors can chose to order special vitamin blood tests, perform urine analysis, monitor pH and more in some states. I think the integration of these is the emerging "modern" chiropractic office approach.

Healthy concepts that we need to initiate for patients include creating workout programs (like an MD writes drug prescriptions), and discussing diet plans. We can help clients build muscle, decrease body fat, improve balance, decrease heart disease, arthritis, gastrointestinal problems, and more. Assess your client with the body composition machine, the OptoJump gait device, the SFMA and FMS and create a profile of where the patient is at here and now. Teach the patient how to perform some bodyweight movements or some kettle bell exercises and then re-test with the OptoJump immediately to see if you are on the right tract. Re-test the body composition in a few weeks to see if the patient is following the diet/food program. I mentioned that we can now follow our patient's daily dietary intake, calorie burn and carbohydrate/protein/fat intake using the Total Health Company system. Part of the modern chiropractic office is our ability to interact and stay in touch with clients via the Internet and computers.

Be a Leader

If you want to help rejuvenate clients and have a leadership voice in your client's healthy aging program, we will need to provide insight, education and create confidence. Recognize that not everyone will succeed with the adjustment alone. Remove skepticism in your treatment, show that you are unafraid that sometimes the treatment you think is helping can cause a bad thing to happen.

For example, balance training and human performance are hot topics around the country. Let's check the clients balance quality with the OptoJump system. Train your client on the Theraband stability pads and re-test them on the OptoJump. Were you able to make a positive objective change in balance? Balance training is a key anti-aging concept.

Chiropractors often forget the importance of proprioception -- that stable relationship between the nervous system, the inner ear and the eyes. You can do a lot to help keep patients in sync with healthy gait. Aging patients want physical stamina and good balance; the ability to move around and travel (through different time zones); be able to make good food choices; maintain good vision, good hearing, and all kinds of other demands. They want to avoid losing it psychologically. They want to go to sleep and turn "off" and wake up "on."

Patients want healthy aging strategies. You have to be able to express a plan, set goals, set patients in a healthy direction and teach them these strategies! Your job is to recognize the right path forward and then to align and persuade people to do the things you know will be relevant for the long-term success of there aging.

Patients want you to lead. No pun intended but chiropractors have the backbone and the integrity to be straight with people for healthy aging.

Click here for more information about Jeffrey Tucker, DC, DACRB.

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