Patients choose to visit a chiropractor for different reasons. Chiropractors can help with more than just an achy back or a stiff neck—here are some other reasons to see a chiropractor:
A Chiropractor Can Offer Safe, Drug-Free Care
Chiropractors use safe, effective treatments that do not involve drugs or surgery. Through manual therapy and other natural treatments, chiropractors help ease pain without using over-the-counter or prescription medications. This reduces the risks of side effects, overdose, substance abuse and dependency. It might also spare you the expense of a high-cost medication.
A Chiropractor Can Deliver Effective Care
Every year, about one out of four people visit a chiropractor for treatment of neck and/or back pain. Chiropractic care, and spinal manipulation (adjusting) in particular, is an excellent first-line treatment for back pain, and three out of four patients who saw a chiropractor reported that chiropractic care was “very effective.” For back pain treatments, chiropractors are the top-rated health care professionals. Chiropractic care has also been shown to be effective in treating headaches and a variety of other conditions.
A Chiropractor Can Find the Cause of Your Pain
Pain appears in different stages and can affect us all in different ways. Rather than just responding to symptoms, chiropractors look for the root cause of your pain. They can provide strategies and treatments to first get you out of pain, and then improve movements and functions—and very likely the levels of inflammatory substances—to keep the pain from returning.
Chiropractors are trained to diagnose the cause and treat pain in all of its stages:
- Acute pain comes on suddenly and spikes quickly. Often, acute pain is the result of an injury, but it can also happen for an unknown reason.
- Sub-acute pain is less severe than acute pain and follows the acute stage of pain. Typically, sub-acute pain lasts from 4 weeks to 3 months.
- Chronic pain can have the same or different intensity as acute or sub-acute pain; we consider a painful condition to be chronic when the pain lasts longer than expected regarding healing time. Chronic pain is generally regarded as pain lasting longer than 3 months. It may be continuous or periodic.
Patients suffering from headaches, migraines, TMJ (temporomandibular joint/jaw) disorder, ear pain or other painful conditions may also benefit from visiting a chiropractor. Many times, improving the function of the nervous system and musculoskeletal (bones and muscles) system relieves the pain and corrects the dysfunction or imbalance that was causing the pain in the body.
A Chiropractor Can Get You Moving and Keep You Moving
If you ever wake up in the morning feeling stiff, achy or like you “slept wrong,” or if you feel tension from working in the same seated or standing position every day, consider visiting a chiropractor. Chiropractors can evaluate your muscles and joints and correct an imbalance or dysfunction. Those corrections over time will help keep your body moving the way it was intended to move and will keep the stiffness and achiness away.
Many chiropractors are also educated in at-home exercise and stretching techniques to keep you moving between chiropractic visits. We often find that the combination of treatment in the office and some gentle at-home care really keeps patients moving and feeling well every day.
A Chiropractor Can Care for Changes During Pregnancy
Pregnancy comes with many physical changes, and some of these changes create tension and pressure where it didn't exist before. There are changes in the curvature of the back, a shifting of bones in the pelvis and postural changes as well. Chiropractic care is safe during pregnancy, and chiropractors are trained in techniques specific for pregnant women. In a small (65-woman) study by Dr. Joan Fallon at Yeshiva University, first-time pregnant women who received chiropractic care during their pregnancy had a 24% shorter labor time than average, and women delivering their second or third child had an average 39% shorter labor. Ask any woman who's been in labor—a 24% to 39% shorter labor time is a big deal!
A Chiropractor Can Evaluate Your Posture and Your Risk for Overuse/Repetitive Motion Injury
Many people spend their days sitting at a desk, working on a computer or standing for long periods of time. These positions over time can lead to poor posture, and poor posture can lead to pain and dysfunction later on. In addition to evaluating your posture, it is also important to evaluate your risk for overuse/repetitive motion injury. Carpal Tunnel Syndrome is the most common overuse/repetitive motion injury, but there are many other types as well. Have you heard of “Text Neck”? Chiropractors are seeing a lot of this type of overuse injury now, which is the result of looking down at a handheld device for extended periods of time. Let a chiropractor know about your work habits and use of electronics to make sure you aren't at risk for an overuse or repetitive motion injury.
There are many reasons to see a chiropractor. Chiropractic care is an excellent first-line treatment for individuals who wish to take a natural approach to restoring and maintaining their health. For overall wellness, regular chiropractic visits can help keep your body functioning as it was meant to and play an important role in preventing future injury and pain.