Joints are the space between bones that allow for proper movement and function. Our body has many different types of joints, from those that barely move at all (like the sutures in your skull) to synovial joints that move in many different directions (like your shoulder joints, ankle joint, hip joint, spinal facet joints, etc.). When the joints move properly, your muscles and ligaments function at an optimal level. This affords you proper function and no pain. However, when joints do not work properly, this leads to a whole host of problems. Primarily, when the joints do not work properly, the muscles and ligaments cannot function properly either. They will tend to either shorten or elongate, depending on the joint problem. When this occurs, they will leak toxins that will irritate local tissues and nerves. This leads to further pain and dysfunction. It turns out to be a vicious cycle until the underlying joint problem is addressed.
The three main causes of joint pain include: macro trauma (big trauma) such as a car crash or bad fall, micro trauma (repetitive use injury) and chemical trauma. If your diet is inflammatory, you will be more likely to swell easily and be more susceptible to injury. Stress also affects the hormones and chemicals in your body and can create an environment where healthy joint function is hard to maintain.
Chiropractors help primarily with the mechanical causes of joint dysfunction. The chiropractor is also trained to deal with certain chemical and mental influences. Spinal subluxations (misaligned spinal bones) interfere with your nervous systems ability to communicate normally with the tissues of your body—resulting in pain, abnormal function and sickness. Chiropractors eliminate or reduce spinal interference to maximize your natural ability to heal.