Chiropractic treatment is a very personal decision and an individualized process, just like any other kind of health care. Many people receive chiropractic adjustments in order to correct back pain or to address a specific problem. Others visit regularly to participate in preventive programs, and to have other needs fulfilled, such as exercise and weight loss goals.
- 22 million people in America go to see a chiropractor each year.
- Only 35% of those are getting help with back problems; the remaining 65% are getting help with other issues, including joint pain, headaches, and pain management for certain conditions.
When was the last time you went to see a chiropractor? What particular issue or problem were you trying to address? We want to hear from you about your experiences and the help you found with getting chiropractic care.
Here, we will discuss different issues for which people receive help from a chiropractor, and what a typical course of treatment might look like. It is important to note that your particular issue may not be exactly the same as someone else’s. For that reason, your course of treatment or number of visits may vary depending on the nature and extent of your injury or condition.
Preventive Treatments and Care
Some people receive chiropractic adjustments as a preventive measure. The reasons for this are many and varied:
- Athletes often see a chiropractor regularly to stay in good condition and to help with injury prevention.
- Individuals with chronic conditions have regular adjustments to assist with ongoing pain management.
- Some people simply feel better and healthier after receiving an adjustment, and stop in regularly to maintain their sense of health and wellbeing.
How often you visit for preventive care will depend on things such as your responsiveness to treatment, how well your body maintains the adjustment, and your overall condition. Some people feel real benefits from visiting once a week, or every other week, while others only need a monthly adjustment to feel their best.
You may also notice that you sometimes need an extra visit between maintenance appointments, particularly if you are more active than usual, or if you have a physically demanding job, such as construction. Chiropractic adjustments are helpful for many people for the purpose of preventing injury and maintaining health, and it is not unusual for people to come in regularly, even if they are not experiencing acute pain.
Minor Injuries or Exacerbations
Many people deal with back pain on a regular basis, even if they do not suffer from a chronic back condition or have not been subject to a serious back injury. The same is true for people who suffer from headaches, neck pain, and joint pain. However, throughout the course of day-to-day living, these parts of our bodies can start sending pain signals, suggesting that something is misaligned.
When that happens, chiropractic adjustments can help relieve minor aches and pains, and can speed up the healing process, making you more comfortable. These adjustments help realign the vertebra, so that your nervous system functions correctly and sends signals to the places that need attention, enabling your body to heal itself more effectively.
As always, the number of visits you need will vary. However, when you experience this kind of minor discomfort, you may want to come in up to three times in a week to ensure you are healing properly and to speed your recovery process. At the end of the week, you should discuss your progress with your chiropractor and see if additional visits are necessary. Sometimes, if a condition is persisting, you may need to continue treatments for three or four weeks before the problem resolves.
Severe Injuries and Chronic Conditions
Injuries affecting the back and joints – both areas where chiropractic adjustments can make a huge difference in health and pain management – are exceptionally common.
- Protracted back pain occurs in 15-20% of the population each year.
- Chronic back pain, which is pain that lasts for 3 or more months, affects 2-8% of Americans annually.
- About 3-4% of the working population suffers from temporary disability as a result of back pain.
- 1% of working adults will be disabled due to lower back pain.
The statistics for arthritis are no better, with 20% of adults eventually becoming disabled due to this degenerative disease. And this data does not take into consideration other diseases, conditions, and injuries for which chiropractic can be a huge benefit, such as fibromyalgia or serious car accident injuries.
If you are suffering from a severe injury or chronic condition, then you may benefit from an extended period of ongoing chiropractic adjustments. These adjustments can help your body re-establish equilibrium over time, and stimulate your natural healing processes. Your course of treatment will depend on your condition.
It is important, particularly for individuals suffering from chronic conditions, that you work with your chiropractor closely to develop the treatment plan that is right for you. Often, a chiropractor will suggest regular treatments for three or four weeks at a time, visiting up to three times per week during that time period, or more, if your condition requires it.
At the end of the initial time period, you will usually sit down for an evaluation of your condition to see how things are progressing, and to discuss whether continued intensive treatments are needed, or whether you can scale back your treatments and start receiving maintenance care instead.
Many chiropractors provide other programs in their offices besides the treatment of joint and back pain. For example, the office might offer massage therapy, physical therapy, acupuncture, or weight loss initiatives. These treatments are highly customized, and you will need to discuss their use with your doctor to determine what is appropriate for you.
Chiropractic care remains highly customizable for different patients’ needs. If you are interested in learning more about how chiropractic can be effective for your particular condition or health goals, we invite you to contact us directly to learn more and set up an initial appointment.