You’ve probably heard of chiropractic services, and you probably know it’s got something to do with bones or you relate it straight to back problems. And you’re right – sort of. Yes, the most commonly known area Chiropractors treat is the spine; however we treat a large variety of disorders ranging from your head, all the way to your toes.
Chiropractic is a healthcare profession that diagnoses, treats and prevents mechanical complaints of the musculoskeletal system. Not sure what that means? Well, the musculoskeletal system includes bones, muscles, tendons, ligaments and soft tissues that work together to support your body's weight and help you move. The term ‘Chiropractic’ actually originates from the Greek words ‘praktos’ and ‘cheiros’, meaning ‘to practice’ or ‘treat using hands.’
Is it a ‘proper’ medical profession?
Let’s let the lengthy studies do the talking to answer that one. To become a Chiropractor, it’s necessary to study for five years to achieve a Master of Chiropractic degree. This allows graduates to practice, with extensive training in anatomy, bio mechanics, neurology and nutrition just to name just a few. Part of the training includes becoming experts in radiology, meaning Chiropractors are able to take and read x-rays.
It’s common to undergo further training into a particular Chiropractic field – like Doctors do to specialise in their desired field. Common Chiropractic fields include pediatrics and pregnancy or equine Chiropractic. Upon graduating, Chiropractors become registered with the General Chiropractic Council and are required to undergo 30 hours of Continuing Professional Development annually.
What can I expect when meeting with a Chiropractor?
In an initial appointment, a Chiropractor will take a thorough history and examination of your complaint. Due to the extensive nature of their studies, Chiropractors look at each individual as a whole and will ask a wide variety of questions from past medical history to current stressors and life events. This in-depth history and examination enable them to form a detailed picture and help get you on the road to recovery. Every plan is then tailored to you and your goals. Some questions may not feel relevant, but may well be a factor in the presenting complaint. If the Chiropractor feels it is not something they can help with, they will have no hesitation in referring you to the correct healthcare practitioner.
What kind of techniques do Chiropractors use?
Many techniques are used during treatment sessions, with the most commonly known method being spinal manipulation or mobilisation. This is when the Chiropractor releases tension in a restricted joint, which may be causing discomfort or contributing to your symptoms. Sometimes a ‘click’ or ‘pop’ noise is heard. This is gas releasing and is an indicator that movement has been generated in the necessary joint. Soft tissue massage, dry needling and rehabilitation exercises are other methods commonly used to further benefit recovery.
Overall, the aim of Chiropractic is to help people of all ages get back to the best versions of themselves. At Total Health Chiropractic we are dedicated to providing a solution to ‘mainstream health care’ that actually cares. We are more than happy to advise you to other healthcare practitioners, advise against treatment if you don’t need it and know when our services can make that life changing impact.