What Does a Chiropractor Do?
Modern practitioners of Chirorpractic are often asked this question. The answer is both simple and complicated. The art and science of Chiropractic as it is known today has been available to the general public for over a century.
Chiropractors practice in all of the populated continents throughout the world and they treat patients of all ages. At the Hunter Chiropractic Clinics here in London we treat patients from all walks of life that are experiencing musculoskeletal pain or discomfort in their daily lives.
What Problems do Chiropractors Treat?
Maybe a better question than asking what does a Chiropractor do is to ask what problems can they treat? Practitioners of Chiropractic, are primarily associated with the care and treatment of people who are suffering from back and neck pain. While back related problems are probably the most common affliction of those visiting a Chiropractor, other conditions such as sports injuries, muscular pain and stiffness, flexibility limitations and pain and stiffness in joints are also treated through Chiropractic methods.
Many Chiropractic clinics, including the Hunter Clinics, advise and counsel their clients on exercise programmes, lifting, posture and movement that will help ensure a more mobile and pain free life. We take a holistic approach to the patient’s musculoskeletal health problems that goes beyond just delivering spinal adjustments.
How Safe is it?
When people ask “what does a chiropractor do?,” they are often really asking if the treatments are safe and will they hurt? Patient safety is paramount at the Hunter Clinics and Chiropractic treatments are always modified according to the age and condition of the patient.
The McTimoney method of adjustment, in the spectrum of the possible methods of adjustment and manipulation, is a comparatively low-force method. Often patients are expecting manipulations or adjustments that will produce an audible “cracking”, known as cavitation. However, this is not the McTimoney way. It is not the intention with a McTiomey adjustment to produce audible cavitation.
Also, the McTimoney adjustments are usually well tolerated by the patient and usually are not painful. Occasionally, especially early in a course of treatment, a patient may feel some soreness and stiffness after treatment or, perhaps more likely, on waking up the following morning. Usually, any soreness or stiffness disappears in twenty-four to forty-eight hours after treatment. Paradoxically some patients welcome reactions as they know their bodies have to change and, with the reaction, they feel this process is beginning.
What Can I Expect During my Initial Visit?
At your first visit to the Hunter Clinic, we will discuss the pain you are experiencing in detail:
- When did it start?
- Has is happened before?
- How long do the episodes seem to last for ?
- Was there an obvious cause to the pain or was it of gradual onset?
- What is the “quality” of the pain – sharp, aching, burning etc?
- Does any movement or position increase or reduce the pain?
- Any history of broken bones or operations?
- Are you taking any prescribed medications?
You will be asked in detail about your medical history. There will be a physical examination that may include appropriate orthopaedic or neurological tests. Most important of all, both by looking at the patient standing, walking, sitting and lying down, and by palpation, the Chiropractor will form a diagnosis or “clinical impression” about the patient’s condition.
From this the Chiropractor will be able to plan how things might be put right. This treatment plan will then be discussed with the patient. In the overwhelming majority of cases, treatment will start on the first visit. Very occasionally, as in the case of recent trauma, an x-ray, MRI or CT scan or other diagnostic procedures may be needed to ensure treatment can be safely commenced. In this case, you will be referred back to your GP for this.
Of course, you don’t need to wait to be in pain to see a Chiropractor. You may just want a professional opinion about your posture, or alignment or how well your body moves. To learn more about what Chiropractic methods can do for you, call us at 07855 916 602 to set up an appointment at one of our three London clinics which are in Canary Wharf, The City and in Blackheath.