Symptoms: The “Check Engine” Light

by Ruth A. McKinney, DC


The Merriam Webster dictionary defines a symptom as subjective evidence of disease or physical disturbance, something that indicates the presence of bodily disorder.    Most people tend to use the words ‘sign’ and ‘symptom’ interchangeably.  Evidence like a rash that can be observed by a doctor is a sign.  Things that can only be felt by the patient such a low back pain or a headache are symptoms.  All signs and symptoms in the body mean something is out of balance.


As modern health care has progressed and become more sophisticated, our society has become more dependent on the doctor and technology to identify health problems.  Chronic symptoms are those that last a long time, and are seen in conditions like asthma and diabetes.  Relapsing symptoms are those that have occurred in the past, disappeared, and then come back again.  Asymptomatic conditions have no symptoms at all.  For instance, someone may have high blood pressure and initially they may not realize it.


While pain or a symptom is often the first sign something’s wrong, it’s actually the last thing to happen in the malfunction chain reaction.  Online symptom checkers are often inaccurate and inconsistent, and can increase the patient’s anxiety and worry in addition to simply not feeling well.  An accurate diagnosis can really only be made by a health care professional.


Instead of focusing on symptoms as a way to determine your overall health, focus on prevention.  You are currently driving through life in the very sophisticated vehicle called human body.  It’s very good at hiding bad news, and you can have any number of disease processes occurring including heart or vascular problems, high blood pressure, cancer and diabetes without initially having significant symptoms.  


Good health is one of the most important things anyone can have.  Many people take their car in every 3,000 miles for an oil change because they know that doing so helps the car to run better and last longer.  Yet they neglect to have simple health checkups and treatment that could prevent small problems from becoming major life changing situations.  Absence of pain and symptoms is not an indication of good health.   Don’t wait for the “check engine” light to come on.  A Chiropractic checkup can help to detect imbalances and restore spinal health.


To learn how Chiropractic helps with many symptoms call our office at 423-485-8480.

When it comes to your health, we’ve got your back!