Your First Visit
Your first visit will last from 40 minutes to an hour. The chiropractor will take a full case history followed by an appropriate physical examination. Following this you will be given a detailed report of findings, and if chiropractic treatment is deemed appropriate your treatment plan will be explained to you. You may be referred to an appropriate specialist if further investigations are required, for example x-rays or blood tests.
Treatment and Patient Management
Chiropractors treat using a wide range of techniques. These may include:
Adjustments of the spine and extremities using hands or specialist equipment
Soft tissue techniques, such as trigger point therapy, dry needling, massage and taping
Advice about lifestyle, work and exercise.
Treatment is tailored specifically to each individual and does not always have to include manipulation.
Will treatment hurt?
Generally a chiropractic adjustment does not hurt – although there may be some minor short-term discomfort which quickly passes for most patients. You will normally find that follow-up treatments are much more pleasant, as your symptoms improve and you feel more at ease with your chiropractor
Are there any risks?
Chiropractic has far fewer risks than many other treatments for your problem. Serious side effects are extremely uncommon. Very rarely manipulation of the neck has been linked with strokes, although research shows that chiropractic is one of the safest and most effective forms of treatment available. Your chiropractor will be happy to discuss all your concerns regarding treatment.
How long will chiropractic take to work?
Guidelines for medical practitioners state that spinal manipulation can help back pain, especially if carried out within the first six weeks. The longer you have been in pain, the longer it may take to improve with treatment. Your chiropractor will advise you of your likely recovery time, and how to minimise the chances of the problem happening. Early treatment is important but chiropractors are also effective at treating long-standing or chronic pain.
Is chiropractic treatment possible after surgery?
Probably. Your chiropractor has the training and experience to treat each patient as an individual. You will receive appropriate treatment and adjustments for your specific condition, while areas not suitable for treatment will be carefully avoided. Many chiropractors are able to offer post-surgical exercise, advice and rehabilitation.
What about just taking painkillers of anti-inflammatory drugs?
These can dull your pain, but it may well return as they do not necessarily deal with the cause. They may also have side effects.
How can chiropractic help joints that are already degenerated?
Degenerated joints are sometimes the result of the surrounding joints not doing their fair share of work, so that the load is not managed equally. Chiropractic aims to restore your normal joint function spreading the load and taking excessive strain away from degenerated joints. Your chiropractor can also give you advice on exercise for maintaining joint function.
Can chiropractic treatment be given during the first months of pregnancy?
Yes, your chiropractor will use safe, often gentle techniques that are suitable for your condition. They may also advise you on diet, posture and exercise.
How often should check-ups be given?
Chiropractors often offer ‘supportive care’, to minimise the recurrence of pain. The practitioner may recommend a check-up every one to six months depending on your original complaint.