What is Chiropractic care?

Chiropractic is a "health profession that focuses on disorders of the musculoskeletal system and the nervous system, and the effects of these disorders on general health." Spinal manipulation or adjustment is practically synonymous with chiropractic (Doctors of Chiropractic deliver over 90 percent of this care in the US). While spinal manipulation is at the core of a Doctor of Chiropractic's clinical skill, they also provide patients with expert assessment, as well as evaluation and diagnosis. Additionally, Doctors of Chiropractic provide other care and counsel to patients including modalities such as heat, cold, electrical stimulation and rehabilitation as well as therapeutic exercise and general fitness recommendations. Advice about nutrition, vitamins, smoking cessation and relation techniques are usually shared with a majority of patients.


What are the educational credentials of a Doctor of Chiropractic?

What qualifies a doctor of chiropracticsFollowing a typical pre-health care undergraduate experience usually at the baccalaureate level,Doctors of chiropractic (DC) must complete four to five years of professional education at an accredited chiropractic college. The Council on Chiropractic Education (CCE) requires that students complete 90 hours of undergraduate course work with science as the focus, prior to admittance. Most students entering chiropractic college have attained a Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science degree.

The complete chiropractic curriculum includes a minimum of 4,200 hours of classroom, laboratory and clinical experience, with over 500 hours devoted to mastering adjustive techniques and spinal analysis. The chiropractic curriculum delivers an in-depth understanding of the structure and function of the human body in health and disease, along with training in the basic medical sciences as well as differential diagnosis, radiology and therapeutic techniques. A Doctor of Chiropractic is qualified to both diagnose and treat a patient, which according to the CCE, classifies DC’s as Primary Care Providers and separates them from providers of non-physician status.

Becoming a practicing Doctor of Chiropractic requires passing of the National Board of Chiropractic Examiners and the local examination of the state, province, territory or country where they are seeking licensure/registration.


What is expected at a consultation with a Doctor of Chiropractic?

During an initial chiropractic consultation, patients will be asked to provide their DC with an accurate health history; including family health history and pre-existing conditions. If you are visiting a DC for a pain-related issue, you will be asked about the origin and location of the ailment

Following the consultation a chiropractic examination will include a variety of familiar tests, including reflexes and blood pressure, along with procedures testing your range of motion, posture and joint movement. In some cases, your doctor may request X-rays or other diagnostic tests in order to properly evaluate your condition.

Utilizing his or her extensive diagnostic training, your DC will provide feedback and determine whether your condition is likely to respond to chiropractic care. If so, your course of treatment is likely to require a more intensive schedule of visits at the beginning, which will decrease as you progress toward resolution of your ailment(s). Additionally, suggestions may be made relative to lifestyle and wellness-related activities to maintain improved level of function. Recommendations on key components of a healthy lifestyle including exercise, diet, posture and stress may also be provided.


Who can see a Doctor of Chiropractic? What can you see a DC for?

People of all ages who are interested in improved health and wellness or are suffering from pain, stiffness and limited function within their muscles and/or joints can benefit from seeing a doctor of chiropractic.