My name is Peter Robert Smith and I am a Chiropractor. The photo was taken in my back garden..
When I left school at 18 I worked as a medical microbiologist for the NHS for eleven years, mainly at St. Thomas's Teaching Hospital in London where I eventually obtained a Fellowship of the Institute of Medical Laboratory Science [Bacteriology] in 1977. I left St. Thomas's to read marine biology and botany [and have some fun] at the University College of North Wales [U.C.N.W.] in Bangor, now renamed Bangor University. I was awarded a joint honours degree in Marine biology and botany. My next move was to the liquid food and drinks industry. Initially I worked in quality control and quality assurance at the Taunton Cider Company in Somerset. This included repeated daily tasting of the product - a terrible job but somebody had to do it. I then spent four years working for Bowater PKL, based in Sunderland, travelling the UK and Ireland resolving problems in factories packaging milk, soups, sauces etc.
I was introduced to Chiropractic care in 1987 as a treatment for long standing back pain resulting from a bad accident as a child when I fell off a tall slide in a park and head butted the concrete. There was no soft landing, foam rubber in those days. This was complicated by two serious car crashes [neither of them my fault] and lifting heavy cider barrels. If you suffer from headaches, migraine, back pain, sciatica or lots of other types of pain or dysfunction, I do understand what you are going through; I have been there myself. The cider company paid for me to have chiropractic care and the amazing results I received inspired me to change career [to industry’s loss] and retrain to become a chiropractor.
I entered the Anglo-European College of Chiropractic in Bournemouth, England, in 1992 and qualified in 1997 after five years of full time, university level, medically based study. I have also attended a lot of CPD (continuing professional development) involving expensive study weekends away. I had found my passion and I have worked very hard for nearly 20 years to become expert at it. Since graduating I have worked in the Republic of Ireland, Essex, and London before returning to North Wales, my base for nearly thirty years.
The Chiropractic profession is controlled by the General Chiropractic Council, which was formed as a result of the Chiropractor's Act 1994. I am registered with the G.C.C. (Number 00896) and am a Member of the Scottish Chiropractic Association (M.S.C.A.) and a Member of the College of Chiropractors (M.C.C.).
What is Chiropractic ?
Chiropractic (Greek - done by hand) is a highly trained form of manual alternative healthcare which does not use drugs or surgery. It is believed to have originated with the meddyg esgryn (bone doctors) of Anglesey and Pen Lleyn who had emigrated to America. Their skills combined with those of other nationalities including Native Americans in the melting pot that was the Midwest of the late 19th Century. Chiropractic finally emerged in 1890s Iowa, in Davenport, later to become the home town of Bix Beiderbecke. Nowadays, like mainstream medicine, Chiropractic has an ongoing programme of research, development, and improvement.
Chiropractic understands the function of the nervous system and its healing powers. We specialize in correcting joints when they become stuck or move incorrectly. Since approximately 1896 Chiropractors have always called this a SUBLUXATION but now, in the UK, there is some dispute about the use of this term so we are obliged to use a phrase like ‘joint dysfunction’ or something similar to describe what we treat.
Joint dysfunction may cause local problems or put pressure or tension on the nerves, spinal cord or brain. This in turn may cause symptoms like pain, stiffness, numbness, pins & needles, or more general, apparently unconnected non-local complaints.
When treating patients we use MANIPULATION of variable intensities to correct joint dysfunction and misalignment which may produce a harmless cracking noise. Manipulation is intended to restore normal movement and function, remove interference, and allow the nervous system to heal the body. Manipulation may be backed up with mobilization and soft tissue work.
There are some small, safe, hand-held adjusting instruments available which are virtually pain free. The manual ACTIVATOR can be made to make single or rapid fire gentle adjustments, whereas the INTEGRATOR is definitely a one shot adjuster but it allows a rotational torque to be applied. Both sound like a staple gun. The electrical ARTHROSTIM gives vibrational adjustments making a noise like a woodpecker.
What is a ‘Slipped Disc’?
The main joint that connects two adjacent vertebrae in the spine is called an intervertebral disc. When one is damaged it can bulge and become painful. This is known as a prolapsed disc, although it may incorrectly be called a slipped disc. Prolapsed discs are commoner than once believed and only rarely require surgery. Chiropractic may be able to improve a prolapsed disc by removing the associated spinal dysfunction and hypertonic soft tissue (spasms). This may allow the spine to move properly and enable the disc to heal and repair itself.
Requirements for Good Health: EatWell, MoveWell, ThinkWell™
(1) Good nutrition, hydration, and exercise.
(2) Good body function.
(3) Good brain function.
(4) Good relations with other people, the world, and your higher power.
(5) Lots of love, fun, and laughter.
How Long Will Treatment Take ?
By the time a patient visits a Chiropractor the problem has usually been present for years, even if the symptoms, usually including pain, have only started recently. Over time, ligaments and tendons will stretch or shrink, and bones may even change shape (remodel), which is why it is important not to ignore these problems. Chronic (meaning persistent or recurring) inflammation may set in. A short course of treatment is usually necessary, rather than just a quick crack. This should be spread over a few weeks, followed by maintenance with gradually increasing gaps between sessions. This will enable the body structures to realign to their new, correct position, and allow the pain and inflammation to subside.
What Kind of Conditions Do Chiropractors Treat?
Chiropractors do not directly treat named conditions or diseases like backache, headache, migraine, sciatica, etc. These are medical diagnoses, and may be associated with underlying biomechanical problems. Chiropractors recognize these presenting complaints and look for the underlying causes of these and other complaints by examining the body and treating biomechanical dysfunction. We are renowned for examining and treating the spine, but we also treat the skull and jaw; arms & legs; hands & feet; ribs; and soft tissue.
Chiropractic works - if you give it a chance !!