When is Chiropractic Care the right thing for me?
Have you ever wondered – what on earth is chiropractic? How can it help me?
This blog is dedicated to all my past patients who took the time to be vulnerable and tell me that they do not know or trust that chiropractic care could help them. Some came to me after many visits to other excellent health care providers. For example, some came after months of massage therapy that provided some immediate short term relief but then the pain returned. Others had been to medical doctors and received prescriptions that helped bring down the pain and swelling but the joint or spine was still restricted and they could not turn their neck or back fully.
Any new experience brings a bit of anxiety and it takes time to build trust with a new person. Thanks to all of you who have taken the time and been brave enough to come to ask about how Chiropractic care might be able to help. I have been able to sit down with hundreds of patients to explain what we do, why we do it and how it may help symptoms in addition to a custom home exercise program.
Today we will explain what chiropractic care is and how it can help you recover from an injury or chronic illness, how you can decide for yourself if you may benefit from chiropractic care, and finally we will share five tips on how to prepare for your first chiropractic care.
What is chiropractic care?
Chiropractic care is a hands on, drug free way to focus on your spine, muscles, joints and nervous system. Chiropractic care is based on the best available scientific evidence and can help promote health and improve the quality of life as well as help with your pain. A chiropractor will use his/her hands to move joints to help get rid of restrictions. A chiropractor has four years of advanced training. When he/she watches your spine or any joint in your body he/she can see where you have restrictions or limited movement. When you have restrictions this can be because of muscles that are tight in the area and are stopping your joints from moving. You can also have restrictions from a traumatic injury (a fall or sport injury) or even from repetitive use of your muscles (typing on a keyboard or bending/twisting).
Is Chiropractic care safe?
Not every treatment is the same of course but your chiropractor is trained to know which treatment is best for you each time you come for a treatment. As you get better or if your health changes your chiropractor may decide to change your treatment slightly to give you the maximum benefit. Here is a short list of some of the things that may be included in chiropractic care.
- Placing his/her hands on your spine or joint and use gentle movements (manipulations or mobilizations) to remove your restrictions and return function.
- Using machines to bring down the inflammation and pain: laser, ultrasound, electricity
- Doing muscle work like stretching or holding or pressing on muscles to get rid of muscle spasm, tightness or trigger points
- Giving you education on what positions to avoid and what positions to repeat to allow your body to heal
- Teaching you self management strategies (like positioning) for relief or coping with pain
- Demonstration of exercises to do to stretch and strengthen towards your recovery
What conditions do chiropractor treat?
- Back pain
- Neck pain
- Arthritis pain
- Work injuries
- Sports injuries
How do I know when I need Chiropractic Care?
Are you experiencing:
- Limited movement of your neck or back?
- Pain and tenderness to touch your muscles?
- Feeling pins and needles or tingling down your arms or legs?
- Decreased ability to enjoy your daily activities or complete tasks at work?
You MAY be having these experiences because of limited movement of your spine, the muscles that attach to it and the nerves that go to all your muscles.
Okay so now you know what is happening in your body. But I am sure you are wondering why you have pain, swelling, and restricted movements?
Well, your chiropractor is highly trained to ask you many more questions about your health, do a physical examination, and maybe even send you for xrays if necessary. With all that information he/she will “put all the pieces together” to try to find out the root cause for all your feelings.
After explaining to you what may be the cause of your symptoms – your chiropractor will then decide which chiropractic care is the right one for you right now. Each person is unique and so each chiropractic care is designed to be specifically for you at this specific time. Be prepared for your chiropractic care to change based on how your body responds and starts to recover.
How to prepare for your first chiropractic care?
For anyone who has never had a chiropractic care before here are some tips:
- Expect to fill out a complete health history including a list of your medications, any surgeries etc
- Bring any documentation you have from a hospital or surgery or past xrays or MRI results
- Be prepared to spend 40-60 minutes for your first examination and 30 minutes thereafter.
- Wear comfortable clothing or you may wear a hospital gown during the examination
- If you are using any assistive devices – walker, cane etc , bring them to the apt
We hope we have been able to explain chiropractic care/treatment and how it can help you recover from an injury or chronic illness. If you have pain, restricted movements that are impacting your quality of life then you may benefit from chiropractic care.
Like so many patients I have met in my career – the most difficult step is to make your first appointment. Give us a call and you will enjoy our friendly staff. You now know how to prepare for your first apt. We sincerely look forward to meeting you and meeting your goals.
ABOUT 16th Ave Chiropractic and Physiotherapy
You have your own personal goals. Maybe you want to return to sport, work, recover from surgery or get ready for a vacation. After 40 years in Richmond Hill our highly trained and experienced chiropractors and physiotherapists know what treatment/exercises you need to help you reach your goals.