Chiropractic care is much more than cracking joints.
It's more about well-being, and it starts internally.
"The nerve supply controls everything," said chiropractor Timothy Rinn, owner of Rinn Chiropractic Center in Steamboat Springs. "The philosophy of chiropractic medicine is that healing comes from within."
Chiropractors approach healing in a holistic manner, focusing on the entire body, rather than covering up one symptom.
Just as parts of the human body are intertwined, so are the problems. To address a problem in a hip, a chiropractor might start by looking at how your shoes are wearing and your posture to see where the problem starts.
Allan German, owner of Craig Chiropractic, said he most commonly treats patients for lower back pain, neck pain, headaches and numbness caused by sciatica or carpal tunnel. People educated in chiropractic philosophy also seek attention for asthma or allergies because they know the problem could be caused by a bone that is out of place.
German said this could be caused by stress - emotional or chemical - and working conditions.
"We've become, to a certain extent, pain doctors," Rinn said. "What chiropractic offers as compared to medicine is that chiropractic actually gets to the cause of the problem as opposed to covering the symptoms. And you don't have the side effects of drugs or even surgery."
Rather than returning over and over to receive treatment, many chiropractors preach prevention.
"I try to educate people to be more preventative," German said. "If you take your vitamins, eat properly and exercise, you won't have to see me as often."
Also, patients need to exercise problem areas to strengthen their overall stature and prevent future decay.
"Life is motion," German said. "If you're not moving, you're dead."
German said he sees people from a few days old up to 90 years old.
A new approach to chiropractic care is the Pro Adjuster, a machine that records patients' problems and applies pressure to adjust them.
If the patient wants, this machine gets rid of the twisting and cracking that might scare some, but it still provides consistent results.
Although German thinks it is the future of chiropractic care and will have one of the machines available soon, Rinn thinks patients will keep coming back for hands-on treatment.
"Chiropractic is amazing stuff," Rinn said.
And although only 5 percent to 7 percent of the population seeks chiropractic care for health and wellness, German said it is the fastest-growing health care choice.