Below are some common questions asked by our clients and some things to consider when seeking chiropractic care.
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What conditions can chiropractors treat?
Chiropractors can profoundly enhance your body’s ability to heal and recover from countless different conditions. Because we work with your body to restore proper function and remove barriers to healing, as chiropractors we don’t heal our patients, we remove barriers to healing and let the body heal itself. That being said, conditions that our chiropractors regularly treat include:
Neck pain and headaches
Injuries as a result of a motor vehicle accident
Wrist pain/carpal tunnel syndrome
Disc Herniations (neck and lower back)
If you’re interested in how effective chiropractic is according to scientific research, you can find more information here: ACA Today
Do I need a referral to see a chiropractor?
Very rarely do patients need a referral to see a chiropractor. Because chiropractors are primary care providers, 95+% of patients can call a chiropractic office directly and schedule a visit. Only very few, specific health insurance plans require a referral before seeing a chiropractor.
Is chiropractic safe?
Because chiropractic restores your body’s natural function, it is extremely safe. We perform a detailed history and exam to rule out any contraindications and use great care in our techniques to be gentle and safe.
As with any medical procedures there is risk. Spinal manipulation to the cervical spine is a topic of concern for some individuals and medical providers. The current research shows that injury to the vertebral/basilar arteries is not increased when patients receive cervical manipulations for neck pain versus seeking care from their primary medical provider. (JMPT)
Current research reveals that the risk of (injury) to the vertebral arteries is about 1-2 million manipulations per incident. To put this into perspective, death rates for canoeing= 1 in 3million & being struck by lightening=1-600,000. Unintentional deaths occurring from prescription drug overdoses occur at a rate of 1 every 19 minutes. Our doctors stay abreast of the current literature in regards to manipulation & safety issues. We perform a thorough history (see below) and screen our patients before any procedures or treatments are performed. If we believe you have a situation that would not warrant safe & effective manipulation we would not perform those treatments and would refer you to the appropriate medical providers for further extensive examination.
Patients who should not receive cervical spine manipulations: #1 You are experiencing a severe headache/pain at the base of your skull like you have never experienced before. This is the most common symptom that vascular injuries present with upon seeking care from a provider. Also if you are experiencing any of the following symptoms or combinations , be sure to let your Dr. know: severe dizziness/sudden unconsciousness & dropping to ground/ double vision/ difficulty swallowing/ difficulty walking/ severe nausea-uncontrollable/ face-numbness/ random eye movements-uncontrollable.
We have included a link for those who would like to review the latest scientific literature in regards to the safety of spinal manipulation to the cervical spine: Chiro.org
For more information on safety in chiropractic, check here: ACA Today – Safety
How long will my recovery take?
Patients with acute pain that has resulted from a non-traumatic circumstance usually feel 80-100% better after 2-6 visits over the course of 1-2 weeks when under chiropractic care. If pain is the result of significant trauma or is chronic (6+ months) in nature, it may take longer to achieve a full recovery.
Many patients benefit from regular treatments at 4-8 week intervals to keep recurrent pain from flaring up. If you are interested in wellness care to stay feeling well instead of waiting for pain to happen, we congratulate you on making your health a priority and regular visits can be scheduled.
I heard that once you see a chiropractor, you have to keep coming back forever. Is that true?
It’s up to you. At DCC, our first goal is to get you relief from the pain you are experiencing. As noted above, this typically is done within 1-2 months, depending on the nature of your injury. However, to correct the dysfunction that led to your injury, we often give patients home care exercises to work on. We will check in on these exercises periodically to make sure that progress is happening and the injury is unlikely to return. Also, we have many patients that simply feel their best when they get a treatment every 4-8 weeks. They may have a past injury that has caused internal damage that can be easily aggravated, they may perform an activity that puts significant stress on a certain part of their body, or they may just want to feel their best and prevent the type of pain that plagues so many other people. Whatever the reason, if patients CHOOSE to get regular chiropractic treatments, we applaud them for valuing their health and gratefully assist them to be the absolute healthiest person they can be. However, you will never be pressured into additional treatments if you feel you have met your health goals.
I think my pain is muscular. Why would chiropractic help? Don’t you just work with bones?
Chiropractic focuses on the whole body. Joints, muscles, ligaments and nerves are all addressed by the manual therapies we perform at our office. If your pain is being generated by an inflamed muscle, our chiropractors will work directly on that muscle to get it to heal properly. We will also focus on restoring proper function so that the muscle you have injured doesn’t keep being overused and repeatedly causing pain.
I was in a car accident. Should I see a chiropractor?
Yes! The trauma of a car accident often leads to chronic neck and back pain if it isn’t addressed properly. Proper treatment of an injury resulting from a car accident includes soft tissue therapies to break up the scar tissue in the muscles, adjustments to restore proper joint motion and also rehabilitating the injured muscles return to their normal function. If no rehabilitation is performed, car accident victims often develop muscle imbalances that lead to chronic neck pain. Auto insurance pays for health care services treating pain that results from a car accident, so no out of pocket expenses are required for auto accident patients. This includes massage therapy services as well. Make sure to tell our staff when scheduling your first visit if the reason you are calling us are the result of an auto accident.
How much does chiropractic cost?
At DCC we accept most major insurances, including, but not limited to, Blue Cross/Blue Shield, Medica, United Healthcare, Health Partners, Preferred One, HSM, GroupHealth, UCare, Medicare and Minnesota Care. Most insurance plans have similar chiropractic coverage as when you visit your medical doctor or physical therapist. Whatever insurance plan you have, we will bill your health insurance for you. Your payment responsibility will be dependent on your own individual health plan and if you have a deductible, percentage and/or co-pays. *If X-rays are needed (less than 10% of patients need X-rays) we will refer you to a local imaging facility.
For those who don’t have health insurance or have high deductibles/high co-pays and don’t want to use their insurance, we have same day discounts. A necessary initial exam is $50 and your treatment is $40, totaling $90 for the first visit. Future treatments are $40 per visit.
What if chiropractic doesn’t work?
If you’re not experiencing at least 50% improvement after six treatments, we will refer you to another healthcare provider who can offer a service we feel may be necessary.