What Is Chiropractic and What Does a Chiropractor Do?
Chiropractic is a type of alternative medicine that surfaced at the end of the 19th century, involving the treatment of so many musculoskeletal and related issues. Chiropractors undertake demanding training at particular schools of chiropractic medicine and are certified and licensed by individual state boards. Reputable chiropractors have malpractice insurance, and health insurance policies now often cover chiropractic treatment.
Chiropractors are trained medical professionals who are well-known for their ability to relieve back and neck pain, even as chiropractic has been proven to be also effective against whiplash, vertigo, digestive disorders, chronic headaches and migraines, leg and arm problems, jaw problems, scoliosis and arthritis. Still, most patients who want chiropractic care do so due to pain in their neck, back or limbs and joints.
Chiropractors are trained to do a variety of evaluations of the human body, such as testing muscle strength, flexibility, and other connected functions. During an initial exam, patients will probably be asked by the chiropractic doctor to give a detailed medical history. The chiropractor will then conduct a thorough physical examination which may or may not involve X-rays and other kinds of tests. A chiropractor may want to be in touch with the patient’s primary care physician about the care he is receiving (or the patient has been perhaps referred by the doctor to the chiropractor for a certain treatment). Lots of doctors and chiropractors act as a team in providing patient care, making decisions as one group over the course of evaluation and treatment.
The chiropractor will usually prescribe exercises for the patient to perform at home as part of a bigger self-care regimen. Follow-up appointments may be necessary a number of times per week for acute injuries, and less frequently for maintenance purposes. Certain chiropractors may as well prescribe herbal medicines and/or dietary supplements as part of the treatment.
What to Expect at Treatment
Different forms of chiropractic are existing, but in any case, you will generally be asked to lie with your face up or down on a low table that is specifically built for chiropractic manipulation. Chiropractors can employ different muscle-relaxation techniques, from electrical stimulation to ultrasound to plain and simple massage, before performing treatment.
The feeling of having the neck, mid-spine, lower spine or hips manipulated has been likened to a “popping” sensation, which usually offers bring instant relief to an otherwise painful part of the body or to a stressed out patient in general. Though several chiropractors still “crack” the spine and joints manually, some are now using hand-held devices called activators to provide a gentler and more precise touch that has the same function and provides the same effects as manual manipulation. A lot of chiropractors stock to manual “cracking” of the spine and joints, but others have been using activators or handheld devices that allow these professionals to deliver a gentler yet more calculated touch, performing the same function and delivering the same benefits as manual manipulation. Finally, there is as well a small percentage of chiropractors who use apply “network chiropractic,” a type of chiropractic medicine where gentle touch is used in place of direct spinal manipulation.