Do chiropractic adjustments hurt?
Generally, no. Sometimes there is brief discomfort at the time. There can also be some soreness after the adjustment. This is similar to the soreness you might feel after doing exercise that you haven’t done for many years. If you experience more than this after an adjustment, make sure you tell your chiropractor so that the adjustment can be modified to suit you.
Do chiropractors work on the spine only?
While chiropractic care is based on improving the function of your spine and nervous system, we recognise that other areas of the body are important, too.
When your hip, knee, shoulder, ankle or other (extremity) joints aren’t working properly, this impacts your overall function. Your chiropractor is trained in diagnosis and management of conditions of the limbs and spine and will look at you as a ‘whole person’, not just a spine!
Do chiropractors put bones back into place?
This was a description commonly used by chiropractors 50 years ago, but the science and understanding of what happens with spinal manipulation has moved on since then.
Perhaps the best way of thinking of misaligned vertebrae (chiropractors call these ‘subluxations’) is that they are not moving properly through their full range of motion.
The bones and the muscles moving them have fallen into a particular pattern – they move better in some directions than others. Chiropractic adjustments help to restore the proper motion to the spine, thus restoring the normal pattern of movement.
How does working on the spine help other parts of the body?
When chiropractors work on the spine, they are doing this to influence your nervous system. One of the spine’s main roles is to protect the nerves passing through from the spinal cord to the rest of the body.
The tissues around the spine (ligaments, tendons, muscles, joint capsule) also contain lots of nerve endings that send messages to the brain about how the body is moving.
When there is a spinal subluxation (misalignment of the vertebrae causing nerve interference), this can irritate the nerves passing through the spine as well as alter the messages getting up to the brain.
When this happens, function of body parts – muscles, joints and internal organs can be affected.
Can everyone be helped by chiropractic?
We’d love to say ‘yes’, but while we endeavour to help everyone, there is a small proportion of people we cannot help. These people we refer to other practitioners, where a different approach may help.
Are chiropractors properly qualified?
Absolutely! Chiropractic, along with a selection of other health professions in Australia, is regulated by the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA).
There are strict requirements to practice as a chiropractor, among them, education. Generally, in Australia you need to study for 5 years (usually a double degree or Masters level qualification) at University to become a chiropractor.
Does private health insurance cover chiropractic care?
Chiropractic is part of the Allied Health group of professions regulated by AHPRA (see above) and is covered by health insurers in the same way as any other health profession.
Your level of cover will dictate how much you are covered for chiropractic. If you are covered for things like dentistry and physiotherapy, you’ll most likely be covered for chiropractic too.
If your private health insurer covers chiropractic care, then any care you receive from the chiropractors at Canberra Spine centre will be covered.
Why don’t chiropractors and medical doctors get along?
Traditionally, this is the case, but more and more, these two professions are seeing the benefit of working together for the benefit of their patients.
Lack of understanding
Often in any section of society, the basis for not getting along is lack of understanding and poor communication. It’s no different in science and health care! Unfortunately, just like the rest of society, people in science and health can, at times, be reluctant to take on new ideas.
Different professions – different focus
Medicine and chiropractic do have a different focus on how to help their patients. Medicine’s expertise lies in helping people when things have gone really wrong and no-one else can help.
Think cancer, car accidents, broken bones, severe illness, etc. Medicine is the go-to profession for these types of problems. Chiropractic has different focus.
Our job is to restore proper motion and function to the spine and nervous system so that the body can stop breaking down and heal itself.
Each profession has its place
They are both valid and necessary approaches in our health care system. At Canberra Spine Centre, we respect your right as a patient to see any type of practitioner. We’ll keep open the lines of communication and work in with what you need.
Once I start seeing a chiropractor, do I need to keep going for life?
Treatment, examination, choice
This is a common misconception, but it’s all about choice. At Canberra Spine Centre, we take each of our patients through a trial series of adjustments followed by re-examination.
We present our findings (what’s changed, what your current state is) and give our professional recommendation for what is best for each patient. Any further care from that point is your choice.
Stay feeling great
Once our patients have reached a point where they are feeling great and functioning well, many of them choose to continue to see their chiropractor for maintenance of their spine and nervous system.
For them, it’s a way to stay feeling good and to prevent accumulation of stress and damage, like something between regular personal training and a regular dental check-up.
Not for you? No worries!
Many of our patients also decide that this is not for them. That’s OK. Our job is to give you all the information you need to make an informed decision and then stand back and respect your choice.