Although the chiropractic profession has been around for many years, many people still don't have a solid understanding of what chiropractors do or how they do it. As such, most new chiropractic patients come ready with lots of questions. Chiropractors are usually happy to answer those questions, but you may also want to do some of your own reading in advance of your appointment. This article is a good place to start. Here are some common new-patient questions about chiropractic care.
Are all patients adjusted in the same way?
No, each patient is treated as an individual. You may need your spine adjusted in the lower back region, while someone else needs their upper back adjusted. You may need the chiropractor to create more space between two vertebrae, while another patient may need more space between a different pair of vertebrae. Your chiropractor will evaluate your spine and adjust its alignment based on what they find.
Does the adjustment hurt?
No, you should not feel any pain as your vertebrae are repositioned. Some people do feel a popping sensation, but most don't find it unpleasant. Some actually find it relieving. After the adjustment, it's not unusual to be a little stiff or sore for a day or two, but not everyone experiences this.
How often do you need to go back?
There's a sort of myth that once you begin seeing the chiropractor, you can't stop. Indeed, many patients keep seeing the chiropractor once they realize how beneficial it is. But there is nothing addictive or controlling about chiropractic care, and if you want to quit going, you certainly can. How often you go back is entirely up to you, under the guidance of your chiropractor. Some patients benefit from weekly adjustments. Others only need to go back once a month or so.
Is a chiropractor a substitute for a doctor?
A chiropractor should not be a replacement for your general physician or for most medical care. However, you can choose to see a chiropractor for back pain and other problems that you might otherwise see your doctor for. If something is beyond your chiropractor's scope and should be treated by a medical doctor, they will let you know or give you a referral.
With these questions answered, you should be better prepared to enter the chiropractor's office with confidence. Don't be afraid to ask them any other questions you still have.
Contact a local chiropractor to learn more.