A quick online search of your local Chiropractic Association’s website should turn up a number of chiropractic options for you near to where you live. Finding one that specializes in your particular spinal injury might take a minute more, but it’s worth the time spent. Choosing the right doctor of chiropractic is a very personal decision. That’s why we have prepared this guide to assist you in making the best choice! This article covers all the essential considerations you should think about before heading off to see a chiropractor.
First off, why should you see a chiropractor?
Chiropractic is an established and well-regarded form of natural healthcare that focuses on the health and function of your spine and nervous system. Chiropractic is based on the idea that your body operates at its best, it’s optimal level, when your spine is aligned and your posture is strong. Chiropractors use a chiropractic adjustment: a precise application of force applied to a stuck joint to increase movement and prevent fixation. Chiropractors may also provide soft tissue release through massage or trigger point therapy. Many people feel relaxed and more flexible after their chiropractic adjustments. Over the medium to long term, patients report a reduction in pain, improved posture and better athletic performance.
A Doctor of Chiropractic’s Qualifications
All Chiropractors must pass a nationally accredited standard four-year doctor graduate programme that includes 4200 hours of classroom instruction, laboratory and internship. Yet, many Chiropractors will further their education and focus on a specialty such as:
- Workplace spinal injury
- Sports chiropractic
- Congenital anomalies
- Paediatric care
- Family care
- Vitalistic and holistic chiropractic care
Any chiropractor should display their qualifications on their website. Typical qualifications may look something like this:
- B.Sc.(Biol.); B.Sc.(Anat.);M.Chiro.
Your chiropractor must be fully licensed and insured to practice. A quick check with the local licensing or regulatory body should tell you the chiropractors license number. This information should be freely available over the Internet.
Different types of treatment
Finding a Chiropractor that specializes in the type of back treatment you require will allow you to return to your normal routine with the best result and in the shortest possible time. Doctors of Chiropractic employ many differing kinds of treatment, such as acupuncture, cyro and heat therapy, interferential muscle stimulation using low voltage, massage, and nutritional counselling. You may be happy visiting a chiropractor who only focuses 100% on chiropractic care or you may want to visit a multidisciplinary clinic that offers a combination of the above treatments. Consider this chiropractic quote from Doctor Paula Basilio (Chiropractor): “Chiropractic is a patient-centered, hands-on approach to health that’s focused on influencing bodily function through structural correction” Basically, chiropractic care is a natural approach to health that helps the body to heal itself, reducing feelings of pains while increasing movement, function and flexibility.
How much does a chiropractor cost?
Chiropractors can choose the rates they charge within a certain range and the standard treatment session comes in at around $65 per session, but rates can range anywhere from $30 to $200 per session, depending on the severity of the injury, the type of treatment required, and the number of years (experience) in chiropractic care. Some clinics offer free first visits and others may charge between $50 and $200 for the first visit. On your first visit the chiropractic will ask you questions on your condition and perform chiropractic tests to inform their diagnosis. You may come back to the clinic on a second visit to receive the results of your first visit and your Report of Findings. The chiropractor will probably want to start treatment on this day if they feel they can help you.
What about treatment plans?
Of course, it’s impossible for to a Chiropractor diagnose you without seeing you, however they should be able to give you a rough estimate of the expected treatment plan based on your description of your symptoms. When booking your appointment, ask about rates, expected treatment plan and any other information that may be of interest to you. For example, many Chiropractors choose to not charge for the initial session, which will consist of diagnosis + information + some preliminary spinal manipulation to see just where your back is, prior to embarking on your treatment plan. Spinal problems are highly unique; therefore, each treatment plan is tailored to the individual and some people respond to treatment faster than others. Your Chiropractor may suggest some specialized exercises that you can perform at home which will speed your healing and shorten your treatment programme.
Health insurance and company healthcare plan
You may want to contact your employer to find out if your chiropractic care will be covered under their company healthcare plan, and some government plans offer 100% coverage for a specified number of treatment sessions (the average seems to be 12 treatments per year) but thereafter, you’re expected to cover the cost on your own. Most health insurance companies now provide coverage for chiropractic care as it is now a widely accepted treatment option. In fact chiropractors’ insurance premiums are getting cheaper due to the relative safe nature of treatments and low risk factors.
Quick facts about chiropractic care
- NOTES: The American Chiropractic Association estimates that Chiropractors perform over 1 million spinal adjustments every business day in the United States and they treat over 27 million Americans annually.
- The Spine Journal found that 94% of patients who underwent chiropractic treatment reported at least a 30% reduction in lower lumbar pain within 4 weeks.
- The Journal of the American Board of Family Medicine, reports that Medicare in the U.S. could save $83.5 million annually by replacing General Physician visits with Chiropractic visits for cases involving upper or lower back pain.
With all the new information, you should be well on your way to making an informed decision about your healthcare options. Chiropractors aim to improve your posture and overall function while working to reduce aches and pains. Many thousands of people enjoy chiropractic adjustments each day. Even insurance companies are happy to include coverage for chiropractic care is it has a good safety record with proven results. So why not contact your local chiropractor’s association today to find your nearest chiropractic clinic.