What to Expect at the Chiropractor Appointment
A good chiropractor will do everything they can to ensure their patients are relieved from pain as fast as possible.
They also try to do this using the least treatments necessary and will advise their patients on how they can avoid having to experience future sciatica and back pain episodes.
Because the profession generally has so many chiropractic techniques and practice philosophies, people should be comfortable asking the questions they need to ask to help them better understand the chiropractic diagnosis, examination, and treatment programs that affect them.
This article will outline what to expect at the chiropractor for the first time. This first consultation usually involves a thorough exam that will often last around 45 minutes or so.
What to Expect at the Chiropractor for the First Time
Some folks will conduct their first chiropractor interview either in person or over the phone, and it will often involve a small discussion, for example, about the patient’s preferences and the chiropractor’s general approach, expertise, and philosophy.
It usually doesn’t involve any physical clinical examinations.
The initial clinical exam is done in the office generally includes three areas.
Patient Symptoms And History
When preparing for chiropractic consultations, patients will usually be required to fill out medical forms and provide their background information about their condition and symptoms. Some of the questions you’ll be asked include:
- How and when the pain started? Was this pain the result of an auto accident?
- Where is the pain located?
- Describe the type of pain you’re feeling? Is it throbbing, burning, searing, dull, or sharp? Is it continual, or does it come and go?
- Was it an injury that might have caused the pain?
- What circumstances/activities make the pain worse or better?
Patients are generally asked to provide data involving their family medical history, current and previous health treatments, and providers as well as any medical conditions that may pre-exist.
The Chiropractic Exam
Thorough chiropractic examinations typically include general medical tests such as reflexes, respiration, pulse, and blood pressure, alongside some specific neurological and orthopedic tests as well.
These specific tests include; neurological integrity, muscle strength, muscle tone, and the affected part’s range of motion.
Sometimes, the affected area may need to be tested further, and these tests often include things like chiropractic manipulation of the body part affected, posture analysis, or having the patient move their body in a specific way.
Based on the results of the chiropractic examination and the patient’s medical history, diagnostic studies will then help identify structural abnormalities and reveal pathologies to help diagnose conditions more accurately.
Diagnostic studies aren’t always needed during the initial chiropractic examination.
It should only be done when the chiropractor strongly believes that an X-ray, or any other test of similar nature, may be required so that they can come up with an effective treatment plan. The standard diagnostic studies include:
- X-ray exam
- MRI scans
- Other laboratory tests
Most chiropractic clinics can have X-rays done on-site; however, MRI scans and other more cumbersome imaging studies or often conducted in other bigger medical facilities.
Patient Diagnosis After Exam
The findings gotten from all the above processes will help the chiropractor come up with a specific diagnosis.
Once a diagnosis has officially been established, the health professional will determine whether chiropractic care can effectively help rectify the condition.
Once the patient is done with their initial visit, the chiropractor that took care of them will tell them their diagnosed condition. The chiropractor will also come up with their individualized chiropractic treatment plans as well as tell them how long the chiropractic care will take.
Some will even go as far as providing you with all this data in writing so that you can have something that can be physically carried home and pondered over. It can even help you when conducting your own research.
Chiropractic Treatment Plans
A lot of chiropractors will insist on starting treatments during the very first visit, although many others will want to wait until you see them for the next meeting.
The good news is your workers’ compensation can often help cover the cost of your future treatment plans.
Chiropractic treatment recommendations and goals may include:
- Key joint dysfunction adjustments
- Modalities designed to improve pain control and soft tissue healing, such as traction, electrical stimulation, and ultrasound
- Stretching or strengthening exercises to help improve coordination, strength and muscle balance
Objectives Of Chiropractic Care
The chiropractor will then come up with specific objectives and goals for the patient’s individual treatment plan. Short-term goals often include restoring muscle balance and normal joint functions as well as reducing pain.
Long-term goals, on the other hand, include the restoration of the tolerance to undertake normal daily activities and functional independence.
To meet these targets, patients will have to make regular visits. When it comes to most lower-back complications, most professionals will recommend you visit the chiropractic clinic at least one to three times per week for the first 2-4 weeks.
This should be followed up by a chiropractor re-exam.
How Often Will You Need To Go Back?
When you’re through with your first visit, your chiropractor will determine which course of treatment will best suit your specific needs.
How often you’ll need to receive care will solely depend on the chiropractor or doctor’s professional judgment, and will normally vary from person to person depending on the overall goals you’ve set for yourself and your presenting symptoms/conditions.
Just as the way good dental hygiene requires you visit the dentist regularly, routine visits to your chiropractor are also essential if you want to maintain proper spinal functions and the like.
Is Chiropractic Care Safe?
The chiropractic science is the safest, drugless, most non-invasive form of healthcare you’ll find out there. There’s nothing to be afraid of when it comes to this kind of treatment. It’s all about knowing what to expect at the chiropractor.
Statistically speaking, patients receiving chiropractic care enjoy substantially lower risks as compared to when receiving regular medical care.
In treatments of this kind, you won’t have to undergo any forms of surgery, nor will you have to take numerous prescription pills.
Furthermore, it usually doesn’t hurt as much as most people tend to think because the adjustments made are typically highly controlled processes that are specifically designed not to cause discomfort.
If you were injured as a result of a car accident or a work-related incident, you will be entitled to either no-fault or worker’s compensation benefits to help cover your chiropractic care costs.
Call (718) 769-2521 today to schedule your evaluation with an experienced chiropractor in Brooklyn. Same-day appointments may be available.