The Ultimate Guide to Options

Understanding Chiropractic and Chiropractors

Chiropractic is a kind of alternative medicine that started at the end of the 19th century, involving the treatment of several musculoskeletal and related problems. Chiropractors go through meticulous training at specific schools of chiropractic medicine and are certified and licensed by state licensing boards. Reliable chiropractors are malpractice-insured, and most health insurance plans now cover chiropractic treatment.

Chiropractors are trained medical professionals who are best known for treating pain in the back and neck; however, chiropractic has also been proven to help resolve leg and arm issues, migraines and chronic headaches, whiplash, jaw problems, digestive disorders, scoliosis, arthritis, and vertigo. Still, most patients seeking chiropractic care do so because of back, neck and limbs/joint pain.

Chiropractors are specialists in the assessment of the human body, including the testing of joint health, nerve conduction, flexibility, and other relevant functions. During an initial exam, patients will probably be asked by the chiropractic doctor to give a detailed medical history. Then the chiropractor will likely perform a very meticulous physical examination involving or not involving X-rays and other tests. A chiropractor may want to be in touch with the patient’s primary care physician about the care he is receiving (or the patient has been perhaps referred by the doctor to the chiropractor for a certain treatment). Lots of doctors and chiropractors act as a team in providing patient care, making decisions as one group over the course of evaluation and treatment.

In most cases, the chiropractor will prescribe exercises for the patient as part of a general self-care routine. Follow-up appointments may be necessary a number of times per week for acute injuries, and less frequently for maintenance purposes. In certain cases, chiropractors may prescribe dietary supplements and herbal medicines as a part of the treatment of patients.

What to Expect at Treatment

There are various forms of chiropractic, but in general, you will be asked to lie supine or prone position on a low-set table that has been particularly designed for chiropractic use. Before the actual treatment, chiropractors will usually employ certain techniques, such as electrical stimulation and massage, to loosen up your muscles and relax your entire body.

The feeling of having the neck, mid-spine, lower spine or hips manipulated has been likened to a “popping” sensation, which usually offers bring instant relief to an otherwise painful part of the body or to a stressed out patient in general. While a lot of chiropractors will manually “crack” the spine and joints, there are those who now use hand-held devices, usually called activators, that deliver a gentler, more calculated touch while performing basically the same functions and offering the same benefits as manual manipulation. A lot of chiropractors stock to manual “cracking” of the spine and joints, but others have been using activators or handheld devices that allow these professionals to deliver a gentler yet more calculated touch, performing the same function and delivering the same benefits as manual manipulation. Lastly, there is a small percentage of chiropractors today who practice “network chiropractic,” a kind of chiropractic medicine that applies gentle touch rather than direct spinal manipulation.