If you’ve never visited a chiropractor, you probably have plenty of questions about how chiropractic care works, whether it's safe, and what you can expect during treatment. At Bomberg Chiropractic, we’re here to answer those questions.
We understand the thought of having an adjustment can be slightly nerve-wracking for many people, and if that sounds like you, let us calm your worries! If you’re curious about chiropractic but have never experienced the treatment for yourself, this blog will help you get a better idea of whether it’s right for you.
Read on for answers to some of our most frequently asked questions about chiropractic care.
1. Is Chiropractic Care Safe?
Chiropractic adjustments are widely recognized as one of the safest, most natural, non-invasive treatments for neuromusculoskeletal discomfort and dysfunction. That said, every health treatment comes with its own potential side effects, and chiropractic is no different.
According to researchers, the vast majority of potential adverse effects are largely foreseeable and temporary in nature. Studies have also found that patients who have long-standing health problems may be more prone to experiencing fatigue or temporary discomfort after chiropractic treatment.
If you’ve never been to a chiropractor, here’s some great news: Researchers have found that patients with no prior chiropractic experience generally do not report more reactions than those who’ve had previous adjustments.
2. What Side Effects Might I Experience After an Adjustment?
The list of potential side effects after chiropractic adjustments is notably small. In fact, many people experience some degree of immediate relief after each chiropractic treatment, and those beneficial effects grow more pronounced over the following hours or days.
Common post-adjustment side effects include:
● Minor discomfort around the treatment area, which typically resolves within 24 hours
● Mild to moderate fatigue (can also occur after movement-based massage)
● Temporary headache
● Nausea or dizziness, which occurs in less than 5% of patients
3. Is Chiropractic Care Safe for Kids?
In a word, absolutely! In fact, even infants can safely undergo chiropractic care because treatments are extremely gentle.
Children are always on the go — running, falling down, playing, and generally putting their bodies through the wringer. All of that daily activity can result in spinal misalignments that can (and should!) be corrected to encourage optimal growth and development.
For kids that experience back pain, neck pain, or other physiological consequences of a highly active lifestyle, chiropractic is a safe, gentle, and completely natural treatment option.
4. What Kind of Education and Training Do Chiropractors Have?
Doctors of chiropractic — which is the title every chiropractor holds — undergo extensive training and thousands upon thousands of hours of education. Educational requirements to enter into the chiropractic profession are some of the most stringent in the healthcare field.
A licensed and practicing chiropractor has completed four years of pre-medical undergraduate education, as well as four to five years of study at an accredited chiropractic college.
In total, graduates of chiropractic college are required to complete a minimum of 4,200 hours of clinical, classroom, and laboratory study that includes coursework in:
● Human anatomy
● Clinical diagnosis
● Diagnostic imaging
● Exercise and nutrition
Practicing chiropractors are also required to complete a specific number of continuing education hours annually to maintain their license.
If you’d like to learn more about the ongoing training and education your chiropractor must undergo every year, you can find that information on the Minnesota Board of Chiropractic Examiners.
5. How Do Chiropractic Adjustments Work?
A chiropractic adjustment is a manual procedure that requires extensive training and highly refined skills. In most cases, a chiropractor will use his hands to manually manipulate the patient’s joints.
In certain instances, the doctor may also use a tool known as an activator to more gently manipulate the body. Generally, the primary focus is on the spinal joints; however, if the patient requires it, the chiropractor may also manipulate the peripheral joints.
Because manual adjustments realign dysfunctional joints into their proper positions, they help decrease inflammation around those joints and encourage proper functioning and mobility. Patients frequently report improvements in their symptoms immediately following manual adjustments.
6. How Long Does Treatment Last?
The duration of chiropractic treatment ultimately depends on the patient in question. No two patients have the exact same issues, so no two treatment plans are exactly alike.
Some patients require ongoing care over a period of several weeks to address debilitating musculoskeletal problems, while others schedule adjustments on a more sporadic basis to treat acute injuries, aches, and pains.
Keep in mind that unlike visiting a medical doctor’s office for treatment, chiropractic care doesn’t involve at-home treatment with pharmaceuticals designed to manage a condition. Instead, it encourages the body to heal naturally, and for that reason, multiple hands-on visits are typically recommended.
Chiropractic wellness care is also a highly effective form of preventative treatment as it encourages optimal musculoskeletal alignment and functioning. For that reason, many chiropractors encourage long-term treatment at less frequent intervals after any acute conditions have been successfully resolved.
Many people also schedule chiropractic visits on an ongoing basis over many years in an effort to maintain good mobility and optimal health.
7. Do I Need an MD Referral to Get Chiropractic Treatments?
Generally, no. You can get treatment from a doctor of chiropractic without getting a referral from a medical doctor. However, some health plans do have specific referral requirements, so if you plan to use health insurance, you’ll want to check with your insurer to find out whether your plan has those stipulations.
If you’re interested in getting chiropractic care for a workplace injury and Minnesota worker’s comp is paying for your treatments, you may also need a referral. You’ll want to check with your claims adjuster to find out what you need to do to ensure your visits are covered.
Please note that here at Bomberg Chiropractic, we are in-network with very few insurers, which means your insurance plan may not cover treatment at our office. We do, however, offer affordable pricing and several payment options to ensure our treatments are accessible for a wide variety of budgets.
8. What Causes the Popping Sound During an Adjustment?
Manipulation of any joint (which is what an adjustment accomplishes) can change the pressure within the joint. When that happens, a tiny gas bubble may be released between the joints undergoing the adjustment, which is what creates the popping sound you hear.
This phenomenon occurs when you pop the knuckles of your fingers, too, and despite what you may have heard, it does not increase your risk for arthritis.
A minor change of pressure within a joint and the popping sound it creates are not harmful, and in most cases, cause little to no discomfort.
9. How Effective Is Chiropractic Care?
Chiropractic care is both a clinically effective and cost effective treatment for a variety of conditions.
Research studies and reviews have found that:
● People who received chiropractic care as a first-line treatment for low back pain reduced their odds of early and long-term opioid use by 90%.
● Patients who received regular chiropractic treatment for a variety of conditions had a 64% lower chance of being prescribed opioid pain medications than those who did not receive chiropractic treatment.
● 94% of patients who received manual chiropractic adjustments saw a 30% or greater decrease in their pain levels compared to 69% of patients who received conventional medical care.
The information above represents only a small fraction of the clinical studies and reviews that have proven the efficacy of chiropractic treatments.
For a more extensive breakdown of the evidence in support of chiropractic care, check out What Research Shows About Chiropractic from the American Chiropractic Association.
While you’re here, check out 8 Things Everyone Should now About Chiropractic Care for more helpful info!
Looking for a Chiropractor Near New Hope, MN?
Whether you’ve never set foot in a chiropractic clinic or it’s been years since your last adjustment, our team at Bomberg Chiropractic would love to welcome you into our care.
Aside from adjustments, we specialize in a variety of non-invasive treatments, including TENS therapy, movement-based massage, spinal decompression, Kinesio taping, and more. We offer free consultations, free initial exams, and at our office, your first adjustment is on us!
To learn more about our services or schedule an appointment, give us a call today at 763-450-1755 or connect with us online, and we’ll be in touch!