Knowing the Facts
If you have not had any chiropractic treatment before, you may have heard stories of people having their backs or joints ‘clicked’ or ‘cracked’ or even seen videos online of limbs being jerkily pulled around. It can look aggressive and quite alarming, especially considering that much of the work is often done on the spine – part of the body which needs to be treated with the utmost care. At the same time, you may have heard how beneficial it can be, and while some of the movements look unappealing, they can bring great relief to lower and upper spinal pain.
This article will address five things you should know about chiropractic care which can hopefully help you make an informed decision on whether this is the right treatment for you.
1 What Is Chiropractic Treatment?
‘Chiropractic’ is taken from the Greek for ‘done by hand’, meaning that practitioners solely use their hands as their tools rather than machines, instruments or medication. It addresses issues with the muscles and skeletal system and works by using deep massage and pressure to realign the body and reduce any spasming which has been caused by trauma or poor posture.
2 Practitioners Train For a Long Time
In the UK, it takes practitioners at least four years to get standard training in this field. Many then go on to have further, more specialised education in areas such as sports therapy, rehabilitation or neurology and so they have a comprehensive knowledge of how the body works. Initial training requires all students to meet set standards to be able to register with the governing body, which includes working with the client and tailoring their treatment to them and being able to pinpoint where problems may be coming from.
3 Practitioners Must be Registered
All fully trained chiropractors legally have to be registered with the General Chiropractic Council. An independent statutory body runs this and ensures that the correct health and safety is being adhered to. You can check to see if there are any local chiropractors nearby by using their easy search tool, it is always recommended to only work with somebody who is registered.
4 It’s Not Just for Bad Backs
Most people seek chiropractic treatment due to back pain, this making up around 60% of the clientele, but it can be beneficial for a variety of different issues. Ongoing research is proving that neurological problems such as migraines can be significantly helped by working to relieve tension in the neck and shoulders. Often it is easy to forget that our bodies work holistically and that if there is a problem in one area, it can often affect another.
5 Is Chiropractic Treatment Safe?
When carried out by a trained and registered professional, chiropractic treatment is deemed very safe, and it is extremely rare for a problem to be made worse by therapy. While it may seem a somewhat aggressive looking treatment, manipulations are measured and precise. Often the only after effects of adjustments will be a little stiffness or soreness which usually subsides in a day or two. The benefits of the treatment outweigh the cons.
One study that looked into prescribed medications vs spinal manipulation found that 56% of patients who saw a doctor saw a 30% reduction in low back pain after four weeks. But 94% of patients who underwent chiropractic treatment saw a 30% reduction in low back pain after four weeks.
Chiropractors also don’t use drugs to treat pain which means it is an excellent alternative to using painkillers or anti-inflammatories to keep chronic pain under control, which means there is no need to worry about the side effects they may have.
Finding out more
Here at The Health Lodge, we have a whole variety of treatments which can help you feel your best, and chiropractic care is one which we have on offer. To find out more about its benefits and if it would be the right treatment for you, please get in touch with our knowledgeable staff today.
Dr Louise Chiasson-Baxter*, Doctor of Chiropractic. Clinical Director, Spinal Specialist.
*Marie Lucie Louise Chiasson-Baxter is a Doctor of Chiropractic and is registered with the general chiropractic council, she is not a registered general practitioner and is not registered with the GMC.