Chiropractors have extensive knowledge of the spine and central nervous system, which they use to treat various conditions. If you’re visiting a chiropractor for the first time, this is what you can expect.
A chiropractor will learn as much as possible about your condition and medical history during your first visit. The initial consultation will involve:
- Answering questions about your overall health
- Discussing your symptoms
- Assessing your spine and posture
- Determining your range of motion
- Establishing your treatment objectives
A thorough intake is necessary to ensure that your treatment does not negatively impact any other existing conditions. Sometimes, a chiropractor will order a set of X-rays to facilitate a diagnosis and create a treatment plan.
If your chiropractor feels that an adjustment is appropriate, you might experience immediate symptom relief depending on your condition’s severity. A chiropractic adjustment involves various techniques of pulling or pushing vertebrae back into alignment. It might create a popping sound due to the release of gases or air bubbles within the joint as the chiropractor applies pressure. The same thing occurs if you crack your knuckles.
Other treatments your chiropractor may use include ultrasound and manual deep tissue massage, heat and cold applications, or acupuncture.
Establishment of a Treatment Plan
Your chiropractor will discuss your treatment plan to help you achieve your goals and sustain long-term symptom relief. You may require frequent treatment sessions at first to ensure that your spine’s vertebrae stay in proper alignment and your muscles remain supportive. Following your first or subsequent adjustment, it is normal to experience some soreness as your muscles adapt to alignment changes.
Most chiropractors take a holistic approach to establishing a treatment plan that includes several weeks of adjustments. Chiropractors also give their patients instructions to follow between sessions. Performing exercises to increase strength and range of motion can help patients get the most out of their chiropractic adjustments and possibly reduce their recovery time.
Chiropractors may also offer nutritional counseling that includes recommending vitamins and specific foods and beverages to consume or avoid. A healthy diet and proper nutrients can promote your body’s healing and eliminate diet-related reasons for your condition.
Answers to Your Questions
The best chiropractors make sure you understand the reason for your discomfort and are available to answer your questions about treatment duration and modalities, and relapse prevention.