The Number 1 reason people go to a chiropractor is for back pain. The spinal adjustment is a unique treatment provided by the chiropractor and has become more popular and accepted as more research supports its effectiveness. The goal with this article is to answer a few of the most asked questions regarding chiropractic services.
Will a Chiropractor examine me?
Yes. First, you will answer questions about the history of your past health, family health history and your current problem or condition. If you have ever been to any doctor, this is all customary. Just as you may have seen with other doctors, the questions will vary depending on the specialty of the doctor and his or her training. Next, the physical examination also will vary depending on the training of the chiropractor, but usually your motion will be looked at, palpation or feeling of your spinal alignment and para-spinal muscles; orthopedic or neurological examinations are performed to help determine the source of your pain. Some chiropractors have additional training in helping resolve pain in other joints in your body and those areas will also be examined.
Do chiropractors order or look at x-rays?
Yes. Many chiropractors have x-ray machines in their office or will refer you to get specific x-rays to evaluate your condition. Some cases are more complicated and require tests like MRI, CT, nerve testing or a blood test will be ordered.
What treatments do chiropractors use?
The primary specific treatment used is called a chiropractic spinal adjustment. When the doctor of chiropractic finds your problem they will often have you lay on a table, putting your arms and legs in certain positions and apply pressure (using their hands or an instrument) to your spine to restore motion and help your body correct its alignment. Some spinal adjustments do not cause your spine to “pop,” which is preferred by some patients. To assist with the improvements, many chiropractors today use physiotherapy treatments like electric muscle stimulation, traction, massage and exercise. It is common for chiropractors to help you determine if certain vitamins or supplements would be helpful in your recovery.
Does the treatment hurt?
Not for most people. Remember, many patients come to the chiropractor in pain and sometimes initially there is pain with treatment. This is not unusual, think about removing a splinter or an orthopedist setting a broken bone. While those are two extremes in treatment, both can be painful to correct, but the pain is short term in the overall recovery of the patient.
Is it SAFE?
Yes, chiropractic services have been shown in multiple research studies to be safe. All medical procedures carry a risk of injury, but most things in life do, just as riding in a vehicle or walking down steps. Every year people are injured walking down steps, yet many of us do it without thinking, unless they are wet or covered with ice, right? Well, with a skilled chiropractor, spinal adjustment treatment is very safe.
Will my medical doctor work with a doctor of chiropractic?
That depends. Everyone is entitled to an opinion; however, chiropractic services are more accepted in the medical community than ever before. Many chiropractors refer to medical doctors, such as your own primary care physician, an orthopedic surgeon or neurosurgeon to name a few. It may surprise you that more hospitals are offering rights to chiropractors to use their facilities such as to order blood work, x-rays or MRIs.
Please keep in mind, that while most chiropractors will accept referrals from your medical doctor, a referral is usually not necessary for you make an appointment to see a chiropractor.
I hope this article helps answer a few of your questions. Ask around, do your homework and find a chiropractor that may help you regain or maintain your desired health.
This article was submitted by Robert Linton, DC, FACO, CICE, Linton Spine & Joint Chiropractic Center to the Mount Sterling Advocate and was printed in the newpaper on June 16, 2016.