What is the difference between a manipulation and an adjustment? According to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, a manipulation is the act, process, or instance of manipulating especially a body part by manual examination and treatment. As you can see there is no intent described in the definition. This means you can get manipulated at any time, at any place, for any reason. You don’t need to do any assessment before or after a manipulation. You manipulate for manipulation’s sake.
An adjustment in our office, on the other hand, has a very specific intent and definition. We only make corrections when specific parameters are met. Is there a bone out of place? Is it interfering with nerve flow? Is it occluding a space? Is it stuck in this particular malposition?
This is why we do not adjust every vertebra on every visit. What good would a correction be if the bone was already in place? If I were to be generous, I would say nothing would happen, but it would more likely be detrimental. This is the difference between a general manipulation and a specific adjustment.
Have a great week,