All chiropractors attend a chiropractic college that grants them a D.C., or Doctorate of Chiropractic degree. Chiropractic physicians are licensed as health care providers in every U.S. state and in many countries around the world.
While competition for acceptance into chiropractic school is not as fierce as medical school, chiropractic and medical school curricula are quite similar. Chiropractic students have more hours of classroom education than medical students and complete a residency where they work with patients under doctor supervision. To achieve board certification, chiropractic students have to pass four sets of national board exams in addition to further licensing in their chosen state.
The biggest difference between medical doctors and doctors of chiropractic is not in their level of education, but in their approach to healing. Medical doctors are trained in medicine and surgery, while chiropractic doctors are trained in the body’s unique healing abilities. While medical doctors are very helpful with chemical problems that can be assisted with medicine (like diabetes or an infection), they are not as helpful in instances where the spine is misaligned or where soft tissue injury is causing pain. There is no chemical solution to those problems. That’s where chiropractic fits in. We provide physical solutions – adjustments, stretches, muscle manipulation – to heal physical problems.
While chiropractic care is incredibly effective at pain management, it has so much more to offer. Chiropractic is based upon the fact that the spine houses the nervous system and if the spine is in proper alignment, the entire nervous system will function more effectively. Chiropractic adjustments take pressure off the existing spinal nerves. Because the nervous system controls every muscle and organ system in your body, regular chiropractic adjustments can provide better sleep, quicker reflexes, improved sports performance, increased energy, better hearing, increased endurance and a litany of other improvements. When your nervous system is functioning at 100%, the possibilities are endless.
This statement is only partly true. You will ultimately always choose the duration of your chiropractic care, no matter what suggestions we make. Many of our patients will tell you they don’t want to go back to how they felt prior to receiving care. Chiropractic care takes away pain and improves overall well-being. Going to a chiropractor is much like exercising, going to the dentist or eating a healthy diet: as long as you continue to do it, you will enjoy the benefits.
Just as you don’t wait until you have cavities to go to the dentist, you don’t need to wait until you have back pain to go to the chiropractor. Preventative chiropractic care is like your routine dentist visit. Just like your teeth, your spine experiences normal wear and tear as you walk, drive, sit, sleep and exercise. Regular chiropractic care can help you feel better, move easier, and stay healthier as you grow older. Although chiropractic works great for even a short period of time, the lasting benefits come into play when you make chiropractic care part of your wellness lifestyle.
Frequently Asked Questions
Government studies have determined chiropractic care to be “remarkably safe.” Statistically speaking, adjustments are safer than taking an over-the-counter pain reliever.
Proper motion in the spine is dependent upon the gas and lubricating fluids that line the different bones within each joint. As tension builds prior to an adjustment, pressure builds in this space. The sound is the result of this pressure being released, rather like the opening of a bottle of champagne. The sound is interesting, but isn’t a guide to the quality or value of the adjustment.
Chiropractic adjustments are absolutely safe for people of all ages, even children and newborns. Think of all the tumbles toddlers take as they are learning to walk, and then later during sports and play. These most definitely affect the spine, as do the shifts their bodies make as they grow. In fact, many of the issues that we see in adults are due to untreated injuries from childhood that would have been easily resolved at the time of initial injury. The good news is children respond beautifully to chiropractic care and rarely need more than periodic check-ups. Additionally, chiropractic is extremely effective at treating other childhood ailments like asthma and chronic ear infections.
For newborns, we have to think about the trauma involved with the birthing process; even natural childbirth methods can affect an infant’s spine. Studies suggest that colic, unusual crying, poor appetite, and erratic sleeping habits can be signs of spinal distress. Pediatric adjustments are gentle. Knowing exactly where to adjust, the doctor applies no more pressure that you’d test the ripeness of a peach.
Sometimes the body self-adjusts with everyday motions and this is completely normal. What is not normal is trying to self-adjust, or produce “cracking” on your own. Chiropractors are trained to adjust in a very specific location in a very specific direction. When you attempt to adjust yourself, you are more likely to create motion above or below the joint that is actually “stuck.” Over time, it becomes easier to self-adjust because the ligaments begin to stretch. Because ligaments don’t have their own blood supply, they stay stretched and are no longer able to provide the necessary structural support. It is much like a stretched out rubber band and presents a major stability problem. Instead of self-adjusting, make a chiropractic appointment.
Yes. Post-surgical patients are excellent candidates for chiropractic care. Your chiropractic doctor will avoid the surgically modified areas of your spine. Surgery often causes instability above and below the involved levels; these areas will be the focus of your chiropractic care.
Some patients experience instant relief. Others discover it can take days or weeks. Many factors can affect the healing process. How long have you had this problem? How long was it left untreated? Are you keeping your appointments, getting proper rest, exercise, and nutrition? Within a short period of time, most patients make enough progress to fully complete their doctor’s recommendations.
Most patients begin chiropractic care when they are in acute pain. Visits are more frequent during this time because we are establishing new patterns in the body and have to override your body’s muscle memories. Once you begin to hold adjustments and experience relief, visit frequency will decrease and we’ll begin rehabilitative care. While many people are tempted to discontinue care at this point, this juncture is the most important time of your care plan. This is where lasting changes are made and where we give your body the tools to avoid a relapse. Once you have made these changes, whether they be through exercise, ergonomics training, nutrition, or sleep patterns, your care plan will be wellness-based. This is where the greatest benefits of chiropractic care are found; the entire body is functioning at a higher level. While we would love for all our patients to experience this, you will ultimately choose the length of your care plan.
At Absolute Wellness Center, we never want money to be a reason that you don’t get the care you deserve. We have a variety of cash packages available. Call (843) 416-8218 for details.
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