According to the American Chiropractic Association, more than 35 million Americans receive treatment from chiropractors on an annual basis. In fact, chiropractors are among the highest-rated healthcare practitioners for treating lower back pain.

Chiropractic care is known to help minimize migraines, reduce pain, improve the range of motion in your spine and other joints, and manage symptoms of chronic conditions. If you’re considering using a chiropractor for the first time, you will probably have questions. It would be best to ask these questions before agreeing to receive treatment from any chiropractic clinic.

1. Do You Offer a Free Consultation?

A reputable chiropractor should allow you to see if the practitioner and staff are the right fit by offering a free no-obligation consultation. A good idea at the initial consultation is to ask for the doctor’s recommended treatment plan in writing with estimated costs so that you can have time to think about it before making a commitment.

2. What Are Your Credentials?

Don’t be afraid to ask to see a doctor’s credentials. Chiropractors hold a Doctor of Chiropractic degree from an accredited institution. In order to receive their degree, they have to pass a National Board of Chiropractic Examiners Exam. It’s important that you feel comfortable with the professional performing your rehabilitation treatment.

3. Can You Provide Me With References?

It’s okay to ask a doctor for references. If possible, ask for references from current patients and at least two from other professionals. If the practitioner has satisfied patients, they should be able to provide you with proof of the quality of their services. A reputable chiropractor should have no trouble in producing professional references to attest to their ability as a qualified healthcare practitioner.

4. What Techniques Do You Use?

There are seven main types of chiropractic adjustments used by chiropractic professionals. Considered by many to be the most effective form of treatment, the Gonstead Procedure uses several examination methods to pinpoint what is causing the pain before treatment. This technique, performed by over 70% of chiropractors, is considered safe and precise. Not every condition can respond with a single technique.

5. How Long Will My Appointment Take?

The initial consultation may be the longest since the chiropractor will need to ask questions and possibly take x-rays to diagnose the source of your pain. Subsequent appointments may vary in time as treatment progresses and pain subsides. In most cases, follow-up appointments will take approximately 15-20 minutes.

6. How Many Treatments Will I Need?

Typically, patients undergoing chiropractic care come in for multiple sessions. Depending on the severity of your problem, you may have to go in several times a week or bi-weekly. After the initial examination and diagnosis, the chiropractor will create a treatment plan deciding how many treatments will be needed to resolve the issue. While most doctors do not have an impartial method to determine how many visits you might need, it’s important that they give you an estimated idea.

7. What Is an Adjustment?

Chiropractic treatments require manual manipulation of your body’s joints, spinal cord, and soft tissues. According to the Mayo Clinic, a chiropractic adjustment is a procedure in which a chiropractor uses their hands or small instruments to apply a controlled and sudden force to a spinal joint. Adjustments help with lower back pain, neck pain, and headaches.

8. What Are the Potential Side Effects?

Serious complications associated with chiropractic adjustments are unlikely but could include a herniated disk, nerve compression in the lower spinal column, or a specific type of stroke after neck manipulation. According to The Good Body, the probability of injury after chiropractic treatment is 40 injuries per 100,000 subjects. After your first visit to the chiropractor, it’s normal to experience mild side effects for a few days, including headaches, fatigue, or pain in the treated areas.

Chiropractic care offers a multitude of benefits with very few risks if performed by a trained and licensed professional. According to the American Chiropractic Association, three in four people treated by a chiropractor described the care as very effective. If you plan on seeking chiropractic care, don’t be afraid to ask questions to determine if the chiropractor and chiropractic treatment is right for you. If you need a chiropractor, don’t be afraid to reach out to Freeze Play Chiropractic & Cryotherapy and ask for a consultation.

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