Welcome to the Pain Free Life. Upper Cervical is a different approach to Chiropractic which focuses on the top two vertebrae located in the upper neck. The top vertebra is called the Atlas while the vertebrae directly below is known as the Axis. Upper Cervical Chiropractors are highly trained in the detection and correction of any misalignment of these two vertebrae located in the Upper Cervical (neck) area.
Dr. Gottlieb practices an Upper Cervical technique called NUCCA (National Upper Cervical Chiropractic Association). NUCCA has developed a system of spinal restoration based on the body’s own engineering and design. Because each individual is different, the NUCCA system is designed to assess each person’s spine individually to determine if correction/restoration is necessary. Spinal injury at any age can result in a tearing or stretching of spinal muscles, ligaments, and tendons. This damage can allow the atlas and axis vertebrae to misalign. The Atlas is the only vertebra that does not have a disc above or below it; thus, the Atlas is the only freely movable vertebra in the spine. This movement allows the skull to rotate, but because of this movement, is also subject to injury and easy misalignment. When the atlas misaligns, compression of the brainstem may result This can cause distortion of signals that flow from the brain through the nervous system feeding all parts of the body. This phenomenon, known as the Atlas Subluxation Complex (ASC), results in malfunction of the body’s ability to heal and restore health.
When the atlas vertebrae misaligns the weight of the head which is about 8-14 lbs will shift off the center of the top of the neck. In an effort to keep the head over the center of the neck, the spine and pelvis will compensate by twisting, causing one leg to be shorter than another. This often can lead to pain anywhere in the body including the lower back because of compensations occurring lower in the spine. Without re-aligning the atlas vertebrae any treatment administered to the lower back directly might give the patient just temporary relief of their lower back pain at best. The Goal of the NUCCA adjustment is to balance the structures of the spine and pelvis via the atlas to allow proper function throughout the nervous system, promoting health and healing naturally. For the patient this can mean a permanent resolution of their pain or health problems.