Choosing a chiropractor can be hard especially with all the different types of techniques out there. There are many misconceptions about chiropractors that have been in the media for years and many people have fears or apprehensions about visiting a chiropractor even when they are so uncomfortable it is hard to bear the pain.
Here are some things to look for when deciding on a chiropractor in Redwood City or any place for that matter.
1. Do they perform treatment on the first visit: Most people seeking chiropractors are in pain and in a lot of cases they have waited until it is unbearable. Of course when coming in there have to be exams performed, questions asked and tests to be done to see what is going on. I am a firm believer in treating patients when they come in. I can’t just let them leave with no treatment and in pain and dis-ease knowing that my treatment would help them greatly. Yes, data needs to be taken but in my office and I do many tests to confirm that treatment is necessary and it is safe.
I also have a machine that pretty much shows me what is going on quickly so I can administer a safe and effective adjustment to the patient and perform any tissue work that may be needed. Again, why have a patient wait and come back tomorrow when they have come in and need help now.
Even if a patient has been in a car accident, I can still work on the tissue and perform cold laser to help with pain.
2. How much time is spent with the doctor: Typically the first appointment is pretty long since the doctor needs to get all information gathered, do testing and answer any questions you may have. After the testing is done, the doctor pretty much ready and knows what to do and can safely administer treatment. After a treatment plan is figured out the doctor doesn’t need to spend another hour with you at each session, they just need to follow up with you and figure out any tweaks that need to be done as far as exercises, posture and lifestyle adjustments. They also need to check in and see how things are progressing with you.
Note: every time you see a chiropractor they are examining the spine when they are touching you. There is a “mini” exam each time you come in.
Chiropractors know how the body is supposed to look, feel and function. We are experts at this and it doesn’t take us long to figure things out. 5 to 15 minute treatment times are enough to find out what is going on, feel the spine, administer treatment along with any soft tissue concerns.
Often times patients qualify the time spent with the doctor in calculating the price. This is not always the case. There are some doctors that have quick analysis and have been working with patients a long time while others will spend time hooked up to a machine or on a massager. Modalities do have you in the office longer but treatment time with the doctor is usually 5-15 minutes just like a medical doctor.
I take a “hands on” approach with care and if there is anything to do with you personally, I am in the room with you the whole time and answer any questions you would like addressed at that time. I want to make sure you are taken care of and have all of your needs met.
3. Once you go to a chiropractor you have to go for the rest of your life:
Your health is up to you. Your brain and spinal cord run and coordinate everything in your body and in my opinion, it is critical and important to keep them working efficiently even in the absence of pain. As you know, you always FEEL great until you don’t. You don’t always know what is lingering until a symptom occurs. Well, keeping your body functioning well will keep you healthy and prevent a lot of sickness and discomfort from ailing you.
If there is a time where you have symptoms and are unconfortable, just like dieting, exercising, learning a new hobby it all takes time. Changing or maintaining optimal lifestyle patterns really determine how well your body functions. If you have very little emotional stress in your life, eat healthy and don’t have athletic injuries or repetitive movements you will need care less.
If you have higher levels of stress it will probably require more visits to keep your body functioning well. With this said, the choice is up to you if you want to continue with care. Most patients that do continue understand that it is beneficial for their health and are determined to stay as healthy as possible However, it is your health and your decision.
4. Are x-rays necessary?: Sometimes. Here are some examples of when an x-ray is necessary:
A. Significant traumatic injury (especially if over 50 years old)
B. If patient has had pain for long extended periods of time that has NOT responded to care. This is to rule out any pathologies that may be there that need to be addressed.
Note: many chiropractors do not have an x-ray machine in the office. We do not have one at our facility but will refer you out to a radiologist who can perform your xray and create a report for viewing.
5. Do I just go in for care or do I have a plan like when you go to a physical therapist?
Well, at our facility we give exercises, talk about ergonomics, nutrition and lifestyle changes. You have your homework and a lot of the exercises are similar to Physical Therapists. If you do decide you want to see one, we can work together. We will keep you aligned and functioning properly to get the most out of your physical therapy. Your muscles and bones are attached and need to work properly to get the most out of your exercises.
6. What other work is performed as part of my chiropractic treatment?
There are many forms of treatment out there but we like to think that our method gets fast results because we work on the joints, soft tissue and nerves. We perform an adjustment to the joints (this can be spinal or extremities) and work on soft tissue with our SASTM tools (A Graston Technique) if it is necessary during your visit. If there is pain or inflammation, Cold Laser is used to provide some relief so you can move and function as pain free as possible.
We cover the whole body at our office and want to make sure you feel happy and satisfied. We would love to be the place you call first, before surgery or taking medications that can have ill effects on the body and have side effects. Start with us first, if it doesn’t work for you, the other options will always be there.