HAVANNA – In the United States, an estimated 280 million people visit chiropractors each year.
Chiropractic as a profession began in 1895 when Daniel David Palmer performed the first chiropractic adjustment. In 1897 he founded the first chiropractic school in Davenport, Iowa.
Most may think that chiropractic is beneficial to the bipedal variety of species, but it’s also widely used to help our four-legged friends.
Dr. Renold Bleem grew up on a dairy farm. As he welded, Bleem picked up a piece of steel and felt something strange on his back: “The next day I leaned over to pick up something and something burst. I was stuck in a stooped position. My parents, who think holistically, took me to see a chiropractor nearby. I was seen several times and it corrected my back problem and I was fully functional again. A love of science, biology, anatomy and physiology, this experience made me think about a career in chiropractic. I was good with my hands and have a deep desire to help people, so it seemed appropriate. I loved farming, but I know milking cows twice is a lot of work. “
Bleem graduated from Sparta High School in southern Illinois in 1987 and then attended South West Illinois College (formerly Belleville Area College) to complete his medical degree. “In January 1992 I moved to Logan College of Chiropractic in Chesterfield, Missouri. which is now Logan University and started my chiropractic training. “
After graduating in April 1995 while visiting Logan, he completed his bachelor’s degree in human biology.
“In 1997, spurred by a hardship in the Havana area, I opened a human practice, Bleem Family Chiropractic, on Main Street,” he said.
“I treat from cradle to grave. We see the whole family. There is always room for one more. Everyone needs chiropractic, but some don’t know it yet. “
What about the animal side of his practice?
“For years people asked me to customize their animals. It was so busy running a business and raising children that I didn’t pursue it. However, after the Affordable Healthcare Act changed the landscape of my office, I began to miss the “barn”. I knew I needed something familiar, and going to an animal chiropractic school gave me this opportunity, ”he said.
Bleem did research at animal chiropractic colleges. He chose Options for Animals in Wellsville, Kansas.
The program requires 220 hours of classroom time and laboratory total.
He attended one week a month for five months: “By the way, only a licensed DC or DVM can attend an animal chiropractic college.”
Bleem completed his optional studies in February 2019. There are two major certifications in the country. The American Veterinary Chiropractic Association (AVCA) and the International Veterinary Chiropractic Association (IVCA) are two rigorous bodies that are held over two days and are designed to demonstrate competency in the profession. “I have taken both committees and passed them successfully. When it comes to customizing an animal, certification and training are important. We serve west central Illinois and beyond when touring much of the state. We prefer to see large animals on site so that they don’t have to travel after they have adapted. Small animals are observed outside of our clinic in Havana in a separate animal adaptation area away from the human habituation area. Traveling with my human table, I was surprised at how many human adjustments I make on the street and in the barn. People are grateful for the time-saving aspect of our service, ”he said.
Bleem explained the benefits of chiropractic not only for humans, but also for animals: “Animals and humans are all about overall function. Function of the nervous system. The nervous system controls every cell tissue and organ in the body and chiropractic gives the body the ability to function at its optimal level. At the very least, it enables the best possible function in its current state or circumstance, and it enables the body to heal itself. “
However, while a human patient is adequately able to articulate where they hurt, animals are a different story.
Bleem said his services are called when an owner notices something is ‘just off’: “Special chiropractic care applied to the appropriate joints improves function. In many cases, this means reducing pain or stiffness. Better function means better blood and nerve flow, improves healing, reduces future recurrences, and promotes better overall health. There is a symphony of moving parts in the body and chiropractic aims to promote natural rhythm and function. “
Bleem went on to explain that chiropractors treat something called subluxation joint misalignment or dysfunction, which causes some type of nerve interference: “It’s about the functioning of the nervous system and the body’s built-in ability to heal itself. We were shocked at how well these animals reacted. Vitality is immediately improved and it was amazing to witness. Animals carry less luggage than humans, so they respond authentically to care. “
Dr. Bleem has in between treated a wide variety of animals from ferrets, horses, alpacas, dogs and others. He has seen dogs lose all functions below the waist compared to horses that cannot bend properly; everything from a little ‘check-up’ for the best performance to life-saving care. “Sometimes the owners have two options, expensive surgery or euthanasia. Chiropractic has changed the lives of many animals and saved them from this sad end, ”said Bleem.
He said he saw a couple of different types of patient populations; geriatric animals, in which they support the function for a longer life through activity, “I see that mostly in dogs.”
The other animals he treats are competitive / sport animals; the owners / trainers do their best to win at the highest level; Agility for dogs while treating horses to aid in athletics, races, barrel races, events, and stability on horseback rides. “People really care about how their animals work and want the best for them. They are much more than beasts of burden. They are an investment and it is worth maintaining that investment, ”said Bleem.
When asked to choose a favorite for animal treatment, he said, “I am a public speaker and I sometimes talk to animals as much as I do to humans, but it would be hard to choose. I really enjoy my people, but the animals of the past few years have healed me. The return to the barn and this arena has brought a lot of peace to midlife and cured the burnout that many professionals struggle with. My intention is to do my best every time I put a person or an animal in my hands. I don’t remember where I heard it, but, ‘To give anything less than the best is to sacrifice the gift.’ I’m a born dairy farmer so I’m happy to see the cows, but I’m surprised at my affinity for the horses. We had a horse on the dairy farm, but it was untrained and we didn’t have much time for it. The reintroduction of horses has changed lives. They have a special ability to know that you are there to help and they are very grateful for the care. “
There are currently three employees at Bleem Family Chiropractic. Melanie, Dr. Bleem’s wife is an office manager, compliance officer, programmer, biller, handler and many other things. “Melanie takes care of the animal chiropractic part of the office. Rose manages reception operations by answering phones, scheduling patients, and checking in and out. “
They are participating with Medicare and BlueCross of Illinois. A cash discount (immediate payment) is available for those who do not have insurance or valuable benefits.
For more information, there is a Facebook page and website, www.bleemchiropractic.com.
You are located at W. Main St. 314 in Havana and can be reached by phone at 309-543-4341 or by fax at 855-299-0582.