Frequently Asked Questions
When Should I Go See A Chiropractor?
If your back is in pain, you must go to a chiropractor. Even if you’re not in pain, you should still go to maintain the health of your back as a form of preventative medicine.
What many don’t know is that a chiropractor can often help you with common back adjustments.
- Difficulty walking
- Shoulder Pain
- Neck Pain
- Ear Infections
- General Health care
Which Doctor of Chiropractic Should I Choose?
There are some questions that you can ask your potential chiropractor
- What are the techniques that you use. Why?
- Do you use a physical aid to adjustment, or do you only use your hands? Devices such as the Activator are said to be more accurate, but that point will be hotly debated by practitioners who prefer to work with their hands alone.
- Are the adjustments low or high force?
- How many years has the doctor been in practice?
- How experienced is the chiropractor in the procedure she would like to use?
What Is An Adjustment?
When there is a painful or unhealthy change in the neck or spine, it’s called a subluxation, which means a partial dislocation. While vertebrae and disks can’t truly be dislocated, they can be moved, which will affect both our body’s structure, the health of our spinal cord and its nerves. Because there are so many functions attached to the spine, chiropractic adjustments have the potential to create within us far reaching positive effects.
Will I Need A Referral?
You’ll never need a referral, because chiropractors are considered primary care doctors in all 50 states.
Is The Treatment Safe?
According to a Rand study on spinal manipulation focusing on the cervical spine, commonly known as the neck: “The complication rate for cervical spine manipulation is estimated to be between 5 and 10 per 10 million manipulations,” or .00009%.
That’s a safer record than many of the common procedures undertaken in a medical office. The vast majority of visitors to a chiropractor’s office experience no neck adjustment issues. The neck is the most fragile area along the spine, which means adjustments farther down carry an even more minute percentage of risk.
Prior to any procedure, the chiropractor will give you a diagnostic test to decide what treatment you need, and how it is best administered.
Can I Take My Kids To See A Chiropractor?
Absolutely. In fact, chiropractic care is often recommended for toddlers and infants who suffer from recurring ear infections. You can see this in action here.
Can I See A Chiropractor At My Hospital?
Since 1983, hospitals have admitted chiropractors to treat patients, allowing them access to labs and x-ray machines. Check with your local hospital to see if they have chiropractors on staff.
Does My Insurance Cover A Chiropractor?
Many insurance plans will cover your visits, but check first with your provider and chiropractor. Medicare covers most adjustments, and sometimes Medicaid does as well. Blue Cross Shield covers Federal employees.
Are Chiropractors Really Doctors?
Chiropractors are called Doctors of Chiropractic, and have D.C. degrees from certified chiropractic colleges. Chiropractors do not prescribe medication.
How Long Do I Have To Get Adjustments?
Depending on the level of your care, you may require an adjustment for a momentary condition (acute), a chronic condition, or preventative treatment. You’ll need to ask your chiropractor how long each of these courses may last for your personal situation.
Am I Too Old To See A Chiropractor?
With the increased concern over medications, more people in their advanced years are seeking out chiropractic care. With the appropriate and caring method for older bones and soft tissue, a chiropractor may be able to ease the symptoms of arthritis and certain kinds of chronic pain.
How Do I Know When I Have a Subluxation?
There are different phases depending on the number of years a subluxation goes untreated. And, you may not know. In fact, a subluxation can go untreated and you’ll feel nothing for many years. But eventually, it will make itself known. Better to go in before that happens, and receive preventative care.
Will My Spine Go Back By Itself?
It can. It’s not necessarily likely, but sometimes a subluxation will reset itself. But if you’re in pain, you shouldn’t needlessly wait for that to happen. Rather, make an appointment with your chiropractor.
Can I Adjust Myself?
That’s not possible, because an adjustment is the extremely careful and studied movement of specific vertebrae by a trained Doctor of Chiropractic. Even if you knew which position to adjust and how, you wouldn’t be able to reach it to deliver the proper force at the right angle. Even chiropractors get adjustments from other chiropractors.
Bending or twisting your upper body until the joints pop is not an adjustment. It’s called cavitation, and the sounds are caused by moving soft tissue, or the release of trapped air.
To support your back health between visits, here are some exercises to try at home:
- Abdominal Strengthening:
Lying on your back, bend your knees as your feet touch flat against the floor. Lift your shoulders by tightening your abdominal muscles and then release. Try to reach between 50 and 75 reps.
- Bringing Knees to Chest
Again lying on your back, grasp one knee with your hands and bring it up to your chest as far as possible. Alternate between your knees and then try both of your knees at the same time. Repeat the moves six times; you’ll be strengthening your back, legs and abdominal muscles.
- Lower Back Exercise
Now turned on your stomach, keep your body rigid as you lift up your head and upper body. This exercises your lower back, which is where many people experience spinal pain.
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