CHIROPRACTIC CARE Information
One of the most common complaints that adult patients report to their doctors is back pain. More than 65 million Americans report having had at least one episode of back pain in the past. For many — around 16 million adults — back pain is a constant struggle, and something they deal with each day. The pain can make it difficult to do everyday tasks, like walking or standing for long periods. It can make it difficult to work or care for children. In some cases, patients find themselves unable to get out of bed without serious pain. Luckily, there are solutions — including chiropractic care.
Chiropractic care can be used to treat a wide variety of aches, pains, and medical conditions. But it is perhaps best known for its use in treating back pain.
Whether you’ve recently injured yourself and are suffering from pain or have been dealing with chronic back, neck, or joint pain, a visit to a chiropractor may be the solution. Keep reading to learn what chiropractic care is all about, how to schedule a visit, and what to expect of your first adjustment.
What is Chiropractic Care?
Chiropractors are trained to perform adjustments, designed to realign the skeletal system. These adjustments help relieve pressure on joints and bones, ease tension in your muscles, and help to reduce a variety of types of pain.
Some common conditions that a chiropractor can treat include:
- Low back pain
- Neck pain
- Tension headaches
- Sacroiliac pain
- Shoulder pain
- Knee pain
In addition to relieving pain and tension, chiropractic alignments can also perform other functions. Some experts even believe that regular chiropractic adjustments can boost your immune system, leading to less illness and pain in the future.
Chiropractors can not prescribe medicine or perform surgeries. However, in addition to providing alignments and adjustments, they can also help patients stretch and offer joint bracing and taping, such as Kinesio taping. They can refer patients to additional integrative medicine experts, like diet or nutrition experts to help patients treat inflammation or lose weight to reduce the pressure on their joints.
What is it Like to Visit a Chiropractor?
The first visit to any kind of doctor can be intimidating, especially when you don’t know what to expect. Understanding what your visit will typically be like can help to alleviate your nerves and allow you to relax during your visit.
In most cases, during your first visit to a chiropractor, you’ll receive some diagnostic testing. This could include x-rays, CT scans, and MRI scans to see any existing conditions or misalignments you might be suffering from.
Then, your chiropractor will likely develop a treatment plan and may begin to manually adjust your joints and skeleton. Different patients react to adjustments differently. While it is never an invasive treatment and you will be able to go back to normal everyday activities after your adjustment, you may experience a small amount of pain, especially if it's your first visit or you are in need of significant adjustments. The pain should go away as soon as the alignment is complete.
In addition to offering adjustments, your chiropractor may also make recommendations to further alleviate any pain that you’re suffering from. In some cases, they may suggest nutrition or diet changes to help you alleviate additional strain on your joints. They may also give you exercises or recommend ice or heat therapy to help further reduce your pain.
Should You Regularly Visit a Chiropractor?
If you’ve suffered a specific injury, a few chiropractic visits may be enough to alleviate your pain. However, if you suffer from chronic pain or conditions like migraines, regular visits to a chiropractor may help you to get relief.
With regular visits to a chiropractor, patients experienced:
- Fewer headaches and migraines
- Less joint pain or back pain
- Greater mobility
Like most medical treatments, results vary from one patient to the next. While one patient may experience immediate relief, others may not have the same results and may need to try other treatments to reduce their pain. For some patients, a chiropractic visit once every few months provides relief, while others find that they need multiple visits a month.
Do You Need a Referal for Chiropractic Care?
Do you need a referral from a doctor in order to visit a chiropractor? The short answer is no.
In some cases, your primary care physician may recommend that you visit a chiropractor to get relief from ongoing chronic pain, migraines, or other conditions. But while you can ask for a referral to a chiropractor that they work closely with, this isn’t a necessity.
Most chiropractic care is available without a referral. Keep in mind that not all insurance plans will cover chiropractic care. If your insurance does not offer coverage for chiropractic care, you can opt for a chiropractor that offers per-visit fees that allow you to get adjustments without breaking the bank. In some cases, insurance companies may cover your visit to a chiropractor if your doctor recommends it for your overall health.
While a referral isn’t a necessity to see a chiropractor, it is important to see a doctor if you’re experiencing persistent pain, and especially migraines. A chiropractic visit might provide relief, but if an underlying condition or injury is causing your pain, a visit to a chiropractor could exacerbate the problem and cause additional damage.
Can Chiropractic Care Alleviate Pain After a Car Accident?
After a car accident, it’s common to experience ongoing, chronic pain. Whether you suffered a severe injury or not, you might find yourself dealing with whiplash, back, or neck pain for days, weeks, or even months after the accident.
Surgery and other treatments can help, but they may not always alleviate your pain. As a result, car accident victims may turn to chiropractic care to find relief.
Who pays for this care after a car accident? If someone else was at fault and your accident did not occur in a no-fault state, the insurance of the person responsible for the accident will need to pay for your care.
Unlike emergency room visits that are easy to prove are connected to your accident, it takes a little more work and experience to ensure that your chiropractic bills are paid for. This is where a personal injury lawyer can help. They have experience fighting for fair coverage for the injuries that you suffered and all medical bills that you accumulated as a result.