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Finding Chiropractors

Chiropractics

Chiropractors, also known as doctors of chiropractic or chiropractic physicians, are trained and licensed professionals who diagnose and treat patients with health problems related to the musculoskeletal and nervous system.

What is chiropractic treatment?

Many chiropractic treatments involve examining the spine and using manipulation and other techniques to adjust the spinal column and ultimately treat the patient’s general health. The philosophy behind this type of treatment is that spinal joint misalignments interfere with the patient’s nervous system and result in discomfort, susceptibility to disease and overall decreased health.

While chiropractors deal specifically with the spine, their approach to healthcare focuses on overall health and recognizes that many factors affect a patient’s well-being, including exercise, diet, rest, environment, and medical history. Along with spinal manipulation, chiropractors utilize natural, non-surgical treatments that rely on the body’s own regenerative ability.

Some chiropractic physicians also use other therapies that use heat, water, light, massage, ultrasound, electric currents, and acupuncture. They may also prescribe chiropractic supports such as straps, tape, braces, or shoe inserts. To help patients achieve long-term health, doctors of chiropractic will recommend changes in lifestyle that affect the patient’s overall health and will often refer patients to other health practitioners to improve health. Most chiropractic physicians also counsel patients about health concepts such as nutrition, exercise, changes in lifestyle, and stress management.

Chiropractic clinics also offer treatments tailored for sports injuries, neurology, orthopedics, pediatrics, nutrition, or internal disorders.

Finding Chiropractors

When looking for a chiropractor, start by asking your general physician or other healthcare professional for a recommendation. You can also ask a spine specialist or homeopathic doctor for the names of reputable chiropractic physicians in your area. Schedule an appointment with a recommended chiropractor for an initial consultation.

During the consultation, the chiropractor should ask detailed questions about your medical history and present health. The chiropractic physician should also perform a complete physical exam; analyze your posture to carefully examine your spinal column while you stand, sit, and walk; and check the range of motion of various joints. He may order X-rays and tests when necessary to determine the causes of your ailments. From this information, the chiropractor should come up with a diagnosis and a Recommended Action Plan.

Ask the following questions during your consultation:

  • What is your training and experience?
  • How much experience have you had treating similar types of problems as mine?
  • What techniques do you practice?
  • Do you take X-rays when necessary?
  • What types of objective means do you use to assess the health of the nervous system?
  • Do you provide recommendations in writing?
  • Can you provide references?
  • Do you offer payment plans?
  • What criteria do you use to determine how many visits I need?
  • What ways do you help patients maintain good health outside of chiropractic treatment? (i.e. Advice on healthy eating)
  • Do you use your hands or an instrument for chiropractic manipulation?
  • Do you offer a choice between deeper, joint-popping adjustments and low-force, more gentle adjustments?

Finding chiropractors is similar to finding other health care professionals, such as dentists or physicians. Take the time to consult with several doctors of chiropractic and give consideration to technique, expertise, and specialty.

Find local Chiropractics Resources

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