What To Expect During Your Chiropractic Visit
Are you going to see a chiropractor for the first time? If so, then it can be helpful to know what to expect to ease any anxieties you may have. The more you know about what to expect, the more relaxed you are going to be. This will raise your chances of having a pleasant experience and getting the care you need.
Chiropractors adjust your spine, and other joints to get them into a better position. They can offer more than just spinal adjustments though. These doctors go to school about as long as medical doctors do, and they have to pass a board exam and have many hours in the field. A chiropractor has training in bone, joint, and nervous system disorders, exercise therapy, and nutrition.
If you want to know what to expect then read on.
Your First Visit: Medical History
First visits often last about an hour and during this time your chiropractor will ask about your medical history and your symptoms. You should tell your chiropractor about
- Why you want help
- Any past injuries
- All your medical conditions
- Any medications you take
- Any use of drugs or alcohol
- Your lifestyle habits like exercise, diet, stress, and sleep
There are many offices that are now including new patient forms you can download from their website and fill out before you even arrive at the office. This can allow for more time on helping figure out how to best help you, rather than spend time doing paperwork.
Once your history is taken, your chiropractor will do a physical examination. Often this means that they will feel your spine, move your joints, and watch you walk. They may also test your muscle strength, reflexes, and range of motion. Not every chiropractor is going to order X-rays or do a blood pressure check, but it can happen.
Your chiropractor may start your treatment at your first visit. If that is the case then what may happen is:
- You will lie on a special treatment table for your adjustment
- The chiropractor will take the part of your body being treated and move it to its maximum range
- The chiropractor will give an extra thrust to make the adjustment
- You might hear a popping sound but do not be alarmed
- You should not feel any pain during this adjustment
Depending on your treatment plan that you and the chiropractor talked about, it may include time using heat or ice. Some chiropractors also have a massage table, that you would lay on and let the machine do the work. It will depend on what your chiropractor has planned.
Before you leave, your chiropractor may give you exercises to do at home. They do not prescribe drugs, but they may give you advice on how to manage your pain while your treatment is going on. You will also likely schedule a follow-up visit and more treatment.