Chiropractic medicine focuses on treating disorders of the musculoskeletal system. It’s a hands-on approach to health care that’s completely non-invasive – meaning that it does not involve surgery.
Most often, people visit chiropractors for treatment of low back pain, neck pain, whiplash and headaches. By seeing a chiropractor, you may be able to avoid taking medications or undergoing surgery.
A chiropractor performs adjustments – or manipulations – to the spine or other joints in the body in order to ease pain, correct alignment problems and support the body’s natural ability to heal itself.
In many ways, seeing a chiropractor is similar to seeing your doctor. When you report chronic pain or a new, acute pain, you can expect an examination, diagnosis and treatment. But a chiropractor uses a drug-free approach that may include manipulations, soft-tissue therapies, or recommendations of specific exercises to correct the problem. A chiropractor can also provide counseling on nutrition, diet and lifestyle changes.
To treat certain types of pain, primary care physicians will sometimes recommend a visit to a chiropractor. Usually a referral is not needed, but you should check your insurance plan to see if one is required. Before you call for an appointment, you may also want to check whether chiropractic care is covered in your insurance plan.