When a patient presents to a chiropractor’s office, it can be overwhelming. Most patients that come into our office do so with some condition, pain, dysfunction, or with a goal to achieve better wellness. It is inevitable that most patients have a lot of questions, whether it is the first time or a recurrent visit. Let’s break down some of the most common questions that we get in our office regarding chiropractic care.
1. How Long will it take?
I absolutely love this question when addressing patients! Obviously, this is a loaded question and varies based on the length of time that the condition was present, what the condition is, and what position/activities patients are doing to irritate the condition. In other words, it is something that can be influenced with the activities done outside the office: bending, lifting, twisting, overuse in the area of treatment. Also, if recommended to do ice/heat protocol, stretching, or rest that can limit the amount of time spent in our office. As much as I wish everyone could rest, most of us have jobs and obligations at home.
So now that I feel great how often should I see a chiropractor for treatment? Unless there is a significant problem, I recommend that my patients come between every 2-6 weeks for tune up. I relate the adjustment to getting an alignment on your car, teeth cleaning, and routine primary care visits. There is always a need for a tune up. Nobody has perfect posture, best self-care routine, or watches every movement that they do to prevent injury.
2. What is that sound made during an adjustment?
During an adjustment or spinal manipulation, joints are moved in a direction to provide a release of tension in that joint. My favorite is children calling it “popcorn”, “popping”, “cracking”, “movement”, and our favorite word “the adjustment”. Adjustments allow for a release of tiny pockets of air in the form of fluid that surrounds your joints. While most of our parents/grandparents told us never to pop our joints because it caused arthritis, there is little evidence to support this theory. The adjustment resets the muscles, releases tension in those joints, and provides a release of pain and pressure that is built up in these joints. Most patients give a sigh of release when we get the right one.
3. What advice do you give patients after a Chiropractic treatment?
During a chiropractic adjustment there is movement of joints, muscles, tendons, and ligaments. It will feel sore or different after a correction. It is recommended that you take proper protocol afterwards for the treatment to be effective. Most of the time I recommend patients to do light walking around the house or outside on flat ground. I also recommend that they use ice (15 min on, 15 min off) to ease the pain and take some of the inflammation out of the treated area. Generally, muscles need self-care too, so make sure that you utilize Epsom salt baths, use a topical muscle rub, or essential oils to ease the muscles. I also recommend and write light duty notes for spouses ;)
4. So you are recommending several treatments, why is Chiropractic not covered by my insurance?
This is one of the biggest questions that myself and our staff generally get even from our patients that we have seen a long time. Chiropractic care is a preventative, first line of defense care for general health and wellbeing of the back and body. It is recognized and covered under most major medical plans. BCBS, Cigna, Aetna, UHC, Health Alliance, HealthLink, Medicare, Humana, and now even VA with referral. These are just some of the companies that have benefits with chiropractic care, therapies, and sometimes acupuncture. So if my insurance covers chiropractic, what is my out of pocket cost for services rendered at your office? This is a great Shannon question, as she can verify your coverage and get all the specifics to help ease your mind about what it might cost. If you do not have coverage through insurance, we also offer a discount medical plan that you can join for discounts on our services.
5. What else should I be doing to make me a healthier person?
This is another loaded question. I could spend hours with patients taking a deep dive into their health. If this is something you would like to spend more time on, please schedule with the front desk to receive more information or book an appointment. Typically, I like to see some sort of data, so I know where patients are at with their health. This data could include blood labs, saliva testing, daily food journals, hair analysis, supplement/medication list, or other reports that we can evaluate. Why would I want to see this information? It is necessary to see what patients are putting into their mouth and where their levels are currently at. Once I get a handle on what patients are doing, it is easier to make recommendations on how they can be healthier. There are some things that I recommend to most patients, which generally include a healthy diet, water intake, adequate supplementation, exercise, and proper self-care. Does everyone need to take supplements? Should everyone take fish oil, magnesium, multivitamin, or turmeric? Do all patients need to be gluten free? Keto, Adkins, vegetarian, vegan, and all the other diets out there can be very overwhelming and are not recommended for each patient. A personalized approach to figuring out what tests need to be done and what the treatment for those conditions will be can help patients attain a healthier lifestyle.
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