What happens on a visit?
On your first visit, history will be taken and examination performed. An examination may include a range of motion testing, muscle testing, orthopedic tests, and neurologic tests. From these, the patient will be advised if x-rays or GP/specialist referral is recommended.
From the analysis of the information a course of action will be decided and for a majority of patients, a first treatment adjustment will be given.
What is a subluxation?
This is a term used to describe a vertebra (spinal bone) that has lost its normal position or motion affecting the surrounding function of nerves and soft tissue, contributing to pain, dysfunction, and loss of mobility. Chiropractic consists of correcting vertebral subluxations.
Does going to the chiropractor hurt?
Generally the adjustment is not painful. If the supporting muscles in the spine are tensed, it can make the adjustment more difficult. Chronic posture and movement patterns can cause tender areas in the muscles and on the spine, which are sore to touch If the adjustment causes discomfort it is usually minimal and short lived. Some patients may feel tired after an adjustment as the body starts to adapt to the treatment givensome may report a feeling similar to that experienced after a physical workout.
Only a small percentage of the total nerves in the body deal with pain, so unless these are stimulated significantly there will be no pain at all. The body can also adapt to or compensate for pain so you become less aware of the pain. For example, if it hurts to turn your neck all the way to the right your body will limit your movement in that direction.
How long does it take to feel better?
Some patients find that they start feeling better after one adjustment. Others discover that progress takes weeks or months. As with any healing process, every person responds differently. Children usually respond quickly. Adults often take longer because most spinal problems are the result of neglect over long periods of time. Other factors such as diet, exercise, past injuries and not keeping to appointment schedules can affect progress.
What should I wear?
Loose fitting clothes are more desirable. To enable the chiropractor to assess and treat the spine professionally males may be required to take their shirts off, for females especially if the problem is in the mid back, a gown may be provided to wear.
Can I have too much manipulation?
The short answer is yes. Any joint can be manipulated whether it is needed or not, because manipulation purely means moving a joint beyond its normal range of motion. If a normal joint is repeatedly manipulated it is possible to stretch the muscles and ligaments surrounding a joint excessively.
Only the areas that require help will be adjusted.