Most people associate chiropractic care with a good crack of the back to put things back into place, but that’s not exactly what they do. Chiropractors focus on your overall spine and joint health – they are health care professionals whose emphasis is on the relationship between the spine and the nervous system. The success they achieve, however, when compared to options offered by medical doctors to alleviate pain, can be astounding.
If someone has been injured in an accident and had pain or discomfort in any part of the back, neck or legs, a chiropractor can help through a series of appointments. These can vary but are usually designed to re-align the body properly – and this is focused on the spine and neck. There are occasions, though, where a chiropractor may open up other joints, such as the elbow, ankle, knee, shoulder, or wrist, as structural alignment encompasses the entire body.
Additionally, chiropractic doctors may help those who have experienced long-term pain not necessarily associated with recent accidents or injuries, and they may play a vital role in more comprehensive physical therapy plans. This includes working in tandem with massage therapists, as well physical therapists who are working with patients in a rehabilitative capacity.
The role a chiropractor play begins with his or her assessment of the patients general health. They will usually take an X-ray as a starting point to determine an individuals bone and soft tissue condition and any problems that might alter the way a person is treated. A series of tests will be given to determine your range of motion– usually by moving your body parts and limbs, using palpation for assessment, utilizing tests for comparing muscle strength, giving neurological tests, and perhaps even performing orthopedic tests near the area the patient is complaining about.
When the assessment is complete, your chiropractor will put together a specialized plan to bring you back to better health. This may be a long-term plan or a short-term plan, depending on the severity of the injury/injuries, their location within the body, and the type of treatment plan necessary. In general, appointments are more frequent at the beginning of treatment and decrease over time.
While some may be leering about the kind of treatment these health professionals provide, others will tell you that seeing a chiropractor was the best thing they have ever done. Chiropractors can provide real, lasting results for those with chronic pain, and they can even help people avoid any reliance on drugs for pain relief or dangerous surgery.