Chiropractic is a healthcare profession directed towards the treatment of disorders of the musculoskeletal systems and nervous system through non-surgical methods. Chiropractors mainly focus on spinal manipulation and treatment of the structures surrounding the spine.
There are some unique features that make a visit to the chiropractor differ from any healthcare visit. Most certainly, you will notice that the office setup and intake procedures to be familiar, but you will be quick to note the unique appearance of the treatment tables. The tables are elaborate to allow specific movement and positioning during spinal adjustments and thus allow the chiropractic treatment.
An initial consultation meeting is similar to that of a standard medical intake. You will likely be required to fill a health questionnaire and answer questions that will give information on your health history. Typically, the chiropractor will ask you to show where you are experiencing pain by marking on human body drawing.
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During examination, the chiropractor will start by conducting a routine physical exam then proceed with a spine-focused exam with the primary focus being on the areas of discomfort. He will also most likely examine the entire spine. If for example, you have a low back complaint, the physician is most likely going to examine your neck; the reason being that problems resulting from an injury in one area can result in secondary problems elsewhere in the spine.
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Typically, a physical exam includes a variety of assessments such as palpation, range of motion, reflex testing, neurological and orthopedic tests focused on the main complaint.
What is included in the Treatment Plan
Once the assessment has been concluded, the chiropractor will develop a plan of treatment that takes into consideration your general health, the extent of your irritation, the condition of your spine, and your goals. Often, everyone has their treatment goals which differ from another individual’s goals. Some people will opt for a continuous care regimen to improve their general health while others will choose a simple pain relief treatment method.
Normally, Adjustments are the most used form of chiropractic treatment. Chiropractic adjustment is a therapeutic manipulation utilizing controlled force, direction, leverage, velocity, and amplitude directed at particular joints. Mostly, chiropractic adjustments are applied to the spine, but other joints like the ankle, wrist, and shoulder can be adjusted to improve their function or restore their structural alignment.
If you are being treated for a back or neck pain, most likely you will receive a series of adjustments at a regular interval. If you cannot tolerate the manual adjustments, you have an option to receive mild or non-force techniques.
Often, adjustments are accompanied by non-manual therapies like heat or ice application, electrical stimulation, rehabilitative exercise, diet counseling, weight loss, nutritional supplements, and other factors related to lifestyle.