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Common Chiropractic Health Questions & Answers

How do you get Subluxations?

There are three basic causes of vertebral subluxation. Physical stresses on the spine and nervous system may include slips and falls, motor vehicle accidents, repetitive motion, and improper sleeping. Chemical stress includes smoking, alcohol abuse, not drinking enough water, improper diet, or the overuse of drugs or medications. Finally, emotional stress is a major cause of subluxation due to its effect on the hormonal and muscular systems of the body. Regardless of the cause, these subluxations need to be detected and removed.

Can I tell if I have a subluxation?

Actually, you can have subluxations and not even know it. Like the early stages of tooth decay, subluxations can be present long before any symptoms emerge.

What is an adjustment?

Adjustments are used by chiropractors to reposition the bones that are out of proper alignment, or subluxated. There are various techniques for adjusting the vertebrae. Some of the more common techniques are:  Diversified, Activator, S.O.T., Drop table adjustments and many more different techniques. Depending on the patient’s age, condition, and with our chiropractors training and experience, any of these techniques may be used.

The purpose of the adjustment is to remove any interference to the nervous system, which improves spinal function and overall health. Adjustments are safe for all ages and are completely natural. We focus on the biomechanical function of your body.

Are chiropractic adjustments safe?

Yes. Chiropractic has an excellent safety record. A New Zealand government study found that adjustments are "remarkably safe." It is chiropractic’s conservative and natural approach that makes it so safe and helps millions of satisfied patients avoid harmful drugs or unnecessary surgery.

Are all patients adjusted the same way?

No. We have training in many different adjusting techniques and will custom tailor the adjustments based upon the patients' subluxations or issues. Just like fingerprints, no two spines are exactly the same. Some factors that may determine which type of adjusting technique the chiropractors at Fergus Falls Chiropractic will use are:  the patient's age, weight, occupation, stress level, sleep quality, and, of course, spinal condition. They will do a very detailed examination to determine what or how you need to be adjusted.

What makes the sound during adjustments?

Adjustments do not always produce a sound. However, some techniques do create a "popping" sound. This audible release is the result of gas shifting in the joint; similar to the noise created by "cracking" your knuckles. This sound is painless and causes no harm.  An adjustment can occur without an audible "pop", it is the motion of joint that determines whether or not an adjustment occured.

Will I receive any medication for my pain?

Because chiropractors rely on the natural recuperative powers of the body, medication is not commonly used with chiropractic care. Typically, chiropractors use ice, moist heat and massage to help control pain or muscle spasm. When properly applied, these methods can have an analgesic effect.  Fergus Falls Chiropractic will communicate with your medical doctor on your condition to ensure you get the best care you can and the fastest recovery possible.  In severe cases, referrals may be made to other health care professionals such as M.D., Orthopedist, or Neurologist.

Can patients with arthritis receive chiropractic care?

Patients who suffer from the various forms of arthritis may get significant results from chiropractic. Depending on the patient, results may vary. However, by keeping the spinal joints moving freely, the stiffness and pain associated with arthritis can be minimized. If your doctor deems it necessary, a referral to another health care provider may be suggested. Additionally, studies show that those who enjoy chiropractic from a younger age reduce their risk of osteoarthritis later in life.

Can a person with previous back surgery see a chiropractor?

Yes.  While an adjustment to a bone that has undergone a spinal fusion surgery will not be done, there is much importance to keeping the rest of your spine mobile.  Chiropractic care may prevent repetitive surgeries, or better yet, if used initially, may help avoid surgery in the first place.

Why do newborns get adjustments?

Even today’s "natural" childbirth methods can cause spinal trauma. Studies suggest that infantile colic, poor appetite, ear infections, or erratic sleeping habits can be signs of spinal distress. Pediatric adjustments are gentle, safe, and offer a drugless alternative that many parents prefer. Pediatricians commonly refer to chiropractors for a natural approach for infant health problems.  Just watch your children at a local park, they fall, bounce and if you think they might have an injury first take them to your medical doctor and if they give you the okay, please give us a call at Fergus Falls Chiropractic.

Do children need chiropractic care?

Naturally, chiropractic adjusting procedures are adapted for the child’s spine. Many childhood health complaints can be traced back to nerve interference somewhere in the spine.

Having the spine checked throughout childhood can help prevent health problems that emerge in adulthood.

Is it OK to see a chiropractor if I’m pregnant?

Pregnant women frequently get amazing results from chiropractic. Fergus Falls Chiropractic is trained in special techniques for adjusting pregnant women. Because of the inability to take medication for pain, the natural approaches of chiropractic are the logical choice for pregnant women. More and more, obstetricians are referring to chiropractors due to the effectiveness of spinal adjustments for pain relief. Also, techniques designed to naturally turn a breech baby are safe and effective.

Do I have a slipped disc?

Discs are known as the "shock absorbers" of the spine and are made up of a fibrous outer ring and a jelly-like center. Commonly, a variety of disc problems throughout the spine may be referred to as a "slipped disc." A disc cannot actually slip because of the way it attaches into the bones above and below. Discs can tear, decay, bulge, or dehydrate, all of which can be serious problems. However, discs cannot slip.

Do I have a pinched nerve?

A pinched nerve is a rare occurrence. Most likely, the pain you are experiencing is an adjacent spinal bone out of proper alignment, causing irritation, slight compression, or stretching of a nerve. These misalignments, called vertebral subluxations, can distort the impulses being sent between the brain and the body. Any interference to these nerve signals can produce disorders in the tissues and organs.

If I already exercise and get massage, do I still need chiropractic?

Fergus Falls Chiropractic addresses the function of the nervous system and the structure of the spine. Because the nervous system controls everything in your body, it is vital that it functions without interference. Massage can relax muscles and improve circulation, but if the nerves that run the muscles are irritated, the muscles will tighten up again. Our chiropractor addresses the cause (irritated nerves), not the resultant muscle tightness/spasm, neck pain and low back pain. With running injuries some issues seem to cause runners to slow down, stop or just quit running. At Fergus Falls Chiropractic we see many ITB syndromes causing knee pain due to a misalignment in the runner's hips, sacrum and/or knees and ankles. The chiropractors at our clinic will help you understand why you have the running injury. We'll figure out how to heal your pain, and most importantly, why and how you got that running injury.

Is chiropractic care expensive?

Many studies in recent years show that for many conditions, chiropractic is the most cost-effective option available. Studies also show that people who utilize regular chiropractic care spend less on all health care expenses because they are healthier and have less illness and injury. In 1992, the Journal of American Health Policy reported that after a review of data from over 2,000,000 users of chiropractic care in the U.S., "chiropractic users tend to have substantially lower total health care costs" and "chiropractic care reduces the use of both physician and hospital care." Chiropractic care is truly an "investment" that brings great returns.  Fergus Falls Chiropractic is a BCBS provider and accepts most health insurance. Come in for a free consult and we'll have our insurance person check on your benefits before you get an exam.

If I crack my own neck or back, am I giving myself an adjustment?

People often equate the popping of one's neck or back with an adjustment. This is a common mistake. If a person feels the need to "crack" their own back or neck, this usually indicates that they have other areas of their spine that are misaligned which causes spinal tension. When a person "pops or cracks" their back or neck, they are moving the vertebrae that are already moving too much! You cannot adjust yourself. Even chiropractors must go to another chiropractor to be adjusted because it is the fixated or misaligned vertebrae that must be adjusted, and not the ones that are already moving too much.

Once you start going to a chiropractor, do you have to keep going for the rest of your life?

Of course not. Chiropractic care has long term benefits that most people choose to enjoy for the rest of their lives, much for the same reason that people eat right, exercise, brush their teeth, go to the dentist, or take vitamins for the rest of their lives...because it's good for you! However, how long you decide to benefit from chiropractic care is completely up to you. You can choose to discontinue chiropractic care just like you can choose to never brush your teeth again. It just depends on your personal health goals. We at Fergus Falls Chiropractic will not give you a pitch asking you to come in everyday for the rest of your life. We try to get you to do more rehab at home and make changes in your life so you are not depending on us to keep you healthy.