Frequently Asked Questions
Below is a list of common questions concerning chiropractic care. If you don’t find an answer to your question, please feel free to contact us, and we’ll gladly help you out.
What is Chiropractic?
Chiropractic is the science of locating misaligned spinal structures, the art of reducing their impact on the nervous system, and the philosophy of all things natural.
Chiropractic is based on the scientific fact that your body is a self-regulating, self-healing organism. These important functions are controlled by the brain, spinal cord, and all the nerves of the body.
Each of us is designed to be healthy. Chiropractic care helps restore optimum function to the body by allowing the nervous system to perform at 100%.
The skull protects the delicate tissues of the brain, while the moving bones of the spine protect the vulnerable communication pathways of the spinal cord and nerve roots. When these movable vertebrae become misaligned, they can place pressure on the nerves that branch off from the spinal cord, which leads to the malfunction of the organs and tissues throughout the body. Chiropractors call this the Vertebral Subluxation Complex. “Vertebral,” meaning the bones of the spine; “subluxation,” meaning less than a total dislocation; and “complex,” meaning consisting of more than one party.
How Does Chiropractic Work?
Chiropractic works by restoring your body’s own inborn ability to be healthy. When under the proper control of your nervous system, all the cells, tissues, and organs of your body are designed to resist disease and ill health. The chiropractic approach to better health is to locate and help remove any interference to your natural state of being healthy.
Today’s chiropractor looks for the underlying nervous system involvement that can be the cause of many health problems.
A common location of interference to the nervous system is the moving bones of your pelvis and spinal column. A loss of normal motion or position of these bones can irritate or impair the function of the nervous system. This can disrupt the transmission of nerve impulses. This leads to malfunction of the organ, cell, or tissue receiving the impaired message.
With improved spinal function, there is often improved nervous system function. Your chiropractor can help remove any interference that may be impairing your health. Since the primary focus of your care is improved nervous system function, chiropractic care can have a positive effect on many health conditions that are not normally thought of as back-related problems.
What Does a Chiropractor Do?
Helping to restore proper spinal biomechanics and improve nervous system function begins with a case history. This gives the doctor a background about your health, such as surgeries, accidents, the onset of your condition, and other details affecting your health.
After reviewing your history and discussing your specific problem, a thorough orthopedic, neurological, and chiropractic examination is performed. X-rays may be taken to uncover structural and functional problems associated with the spinal column. These examinations help identify areas of spinal malfunction and resulting nervous system deficit.
The findings of these examinations will be explained, and a treatment plan may be recommended. Progress is monitored with periodic examinations and follow-up reports. Since the word “doctor” comes from the Latin word meaning “teacher,”; regardless of your doctor’s unique clinical approach, he or she should strongly commit to patient education.
What is an Adjustment?
A chiropractic adjustment is the art of using a specific force in a precise direction, applied to a joint that is fixed, “locked up,” or not moving properly. This adds motion to the joint (as well as relieving pressure from the nerves), helping the bones gradually return to a more normal position and motion. The purpose of this safe and natural procedure is to improve spinal function, nervous system function, and health.
Are All Patients Adjusted the Same Way?
Regardless of the adjusting technique, chiropractic care is tailored to each patient’s age, condition, and spinal problem.
The doctor evaluates each patient’s unique spinal problem and develops an individual course of care. The resulting recommendations are based on years of training and experience.
Patients will notice that their chiropractic care is delivered with confidence and precision. Each visit builds on the one before. While visits may seem similar, each patient’s care uniquely differs from every other patient’s.
Some patients who complain of headaches may actually have a lower back problem that is causing a compensation reaction at the base of the skull. Other patients may be experiencing numbness and tingling in their fingers when the problem is in the neck. Every patient presents a uniquely different spinal pattern, and their treatment is tailored around them.
Can I Adjust Myself?
You cannot effectively adjust yourself.
Since chiropractic adjustment is a specific force applied in a specific direction to a specific spinal joint, it is virtually impossible to adjust oneself. It is possible to turn, bend, or twist in certain ways to create a “popping” sound, like the sound that sometimes accompanies a chiropractic adjustment. Unfortunately, this type of joint manipulation is usually counterproductive, often making an already unstable spine area even more unstable. Adjusting the spine is not for amateurs!
The best way to enjoy the healthful benefits of chiropractic is to receive adjustments from a Doctor of Chiropractic. Even your doctor must seek out the services of another colleague to help restore and maintain proper spinal function.
How Long Will I Need Chiropractic Care?
Periodic chiropractic adjustments, like brushing and flossing, regular exercise, and eating wholesome foods, are part of a healthy lifestyle.
Spinal problems, neglected since early childhood, may require ongoing supportive care for optimum spinal function. These long-standing problems are often associated with muscle weakness, soft tissue damage, and degenerative changes to the spine.
Most patients find that periodic chiropractic adjustments help keep them in tip-top shape. Those who are active, have stressful jobs or want to be their very best find that a schedule of preventive visits is helpful in the maintenance of good health.
Some patients seek chiropractic care only when their ache or pain becomes unbearable. While this style of “crisis management” is usually more costly and time-consuming, our office stands ready to help all patients, regardless of their health goals.
How long you decide to benefit from chiropractic care depends on how long you wish to maintain optimum health.
Why Do Children Need Chiropractic Care?
Chiropractic has been shown to be helpful with scoliosis and many other so-called “normal” childhood health problems.
Since significant spinal trauma can occur at birth, many parents have their newborns checked for subluxations. Later, learning to walk, ride a bicycle, and other childhood activities can cause spinal problems. While a bandage and some comforting words can help a skinned knee, the unseen damage to the child’s spine is the unique domain of a chiropractor.
Many childhood health complaints brushed off as “growing pains” can often be traced to the spine. Regular chiropractic checkups can identify these problems and help avoid many health complaints seen later in adults.
Naturally, chiropractic adjusting procedures are modified to a child’s spine. Most parents report that their children enjoy their chiropractic adjustments and are healthier than other children because of it.
How Can I Check If I Have Subluxations?
Although the only definitive method for identifying subluxations is to have your nervous system and spinal column assessed by a trained chiropractor, there are a few basic ways you can test yourself. These methods are not foolproof but are a fairly reliable indication of some spinal misalignment and subsequent nervous system impairment. To view these simple tests, follow this link A Self Examination for Nerve Interference.