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FAQ & Myths

Does insurance cover Chiropractic care?  Is it expensive?
Is Chiropractic Safe?
I’ve heard stories about stroke, are neck adjustments safe?
Do adjustments hurt?
What is the popping sound when I get adjusted?
Everyone knows Chiropractic is effective for low back pain.  What else can Chiropractic help?
How long will it take?
Is Chiropractic safe during pregnancy?
Can newborns and infants be adjusted?
How does Chiropractic help athletes maintain and improve athletic performance?
Some people say that once you go to a Chiropractor you need to go for life.  Is this true?
What is Active Release Techniques (ART)?
What exactly is Acupuncture?

What is a Chiropractor?
In Ontario, the practice of chiropractic is defined as the assessment of conditions related to the spine, nervous system, and joints; and the diagnosis, prevention, and treatment, primarily by adjustment, of dysfunctions or disorders arising from the spine; and dysfunctions or disorders arising from the joints.  Our goal is to restore normal motion & function and to relieve pain.

Are Chiropractors real doctors?
Chiropractors are absolutely real doctors!  Chiropractors are regulated under provincial statute in every province which grants us the right to use the title “Doctor.”  In Ontario, there are only 4 other health care professions allowed to also use the title doctor (medicine, dentistry, optometry, and psychology).

What does Chiropractic education involve?
Many people are surprised to learn that our schooling rivals that of medical doctors.  Just like medicine, prior to attending a chiropractic college, a student is required to have a minimum of 3 undergraduate years education.  Following that, a typical Chiropractic college requires a minimum of 4 to 5 academic years of professional resident study involving not less than 4000 hrs!

Do you need a referral from your family doctor to see a Chiropractor?
No.  Chiropractors are considered ‘primary care doctors’, meaning you can visit us without any propr referral.  Chiropractors are trained to recognize disorders beyond our scope of practice and in such cases refer the patient for the appropriate medical care in a timely manner.

Why don’t medical practitioners and Chiropractors get along?
That’s changing!  Years of prejudice and bias are giving way to research showing the benefits of Chiropractic care.  Attitudes are slow to change.  However, as the public demands alternatives to drugs and surgery, more and more medical practitioners are referring their patients to our office.

Does insurance cover Chiropractic care?  Is it expensive?
Most private and work place insurance do cover at least a portion of the costs.  Your health affects everything you do and everyone you know.  It is your most valuable possession!  Considering what it can do for you, Chiropractic is fairly inexpensive here in the north, with the average cost per treatment ranging from $27 – $30.

Is Chiropractic Safe?
Yes.  Chiropractic is a safe, gentle, conservative and natural approach to better health.  In repeated studies, chiropractic has been found to be beneficial and it provides an effective alternative to drugs or surgery.

I’ve heard stories about stroke, are neck adjustments safe?
It is important to remember that NO medical treatment is free from risk.  With neck adjustments the big fear is stroke.  Studies have concluded that stroke symptoms associated with neck adjustments are so rare that it is difficult to quantify!  It is interesting to note that by way of comparison, neck adjustment is significantly safer than any other common treatments for headaches, neck pain and back pain, including long-term use of over the counter medications, which carry a 1000 times great risk of serious complications than neck adjustment!

Do adjustments hurt?
In some cases there is the feeling of a light pressure on your spinal joints and/or you may hear a popping sound, but there is rarely pain associated with an adjustment.  If you’ve never been adjusted before, there may be mild soreness following your first few treatments; similar to how you’d feel after working out.

What is the popping sound when I get adjusted?
Lubricating fluids separate the bones of each spinal joint.  Some adjusting methods can produce a sound when the gas and fluids in the joint shift.  It’s much like opening a bottle of champagne or removing a suction cup.  The sound is interesting, but it isn’t a guide to the quality or value of the adjustment.  It is absolutely NOT cracking bones or bones rubbing!

Everyone knows Chiropractic is effective for low back pain.  What else can Chiropractic help?
Under Ontario’s scope of practice, Chiropractors can effectively treat conditions related to the spine (meaning neck, middle, and low back), and any other joints in the body (such as shoulder, elbow, wrist, hip, knee, ankle, etc.).  When you think “Chiropractor”, you need to widen your outlook and think “head-to-toe”!  Some of the more common conditions we have successfully treated in our clinic include: neck pain & headaches, whiplash, tendonitis/bursitis, carpal tunnel syndrome & other pinched nerves, shoulder conditions, and much more!  Be sure to check our “What we can help” section for more information.

How long will it take?
It is easy to become impatient if you’re accustomed to “fast, fast relief” by taking a pill that blocks your pain sensation, but true healing moves at it’s own pace.  And since Chiropractic care depends on the healing abilities of each patient, results can vary from patient to patient.  For some, there is immediate relief, while others require more frequent visits over a longer period of time to feel better.

Is Chiropractic safe during pregnancy?
Absolutely. Chiropractic care during pregnancy is safe for both mother and fetus. Spinal adjustments are especially gentle during pregnancy as far less force is required to correct dysfunction. This is due to the increase in hormones that cause significant muscle and ligament relaxation. Particular adjustive positions are also used to provide comfort and safety for both mom and fetus.  By correcting dysfunction, we can help optimize the function of your spine and nervous system to provide a sound foundation for a healthy pregnancy. Other Chiropractic benefits have been noted as well, and our care may help:
• Provide pain relief
• Control morning sickness
• Shorten & ease deliveries

Can newborns and infants be adjusted?
Not only can they, but they should be adjusted.  Even today’s natural childbirth methods can affect an infant’s spine.  Preliminary studies suggest that colic, unusual crying, poor appetite, ear infections, excessive gas, or erratic sleeping habits can be signs of spinal distress.  Pediatric adjustments are gentle.  Knowing where to adjust, the doctor applies no more pressure than you’d use to test the ripeness of a tomato!

How does Chiropractic help athletes maintain and improve athletic performance?
By maximizing muscle and joint coordination through the adjustment, ART, and exercise, chiropractic can help to improve efficiency, speed, and strength to enhance health and performance.  Also, because athletes place a lot of demands on their bodies, regular care can aid in both prevention and management of injuries.

Some people say that once you go to a Chiropractor you need to go for life.  Is this true?
No this is not true.  How long you continue to benefit from Chiropractic care is ALWAYS up to you!  For many, Chiropractic is part of their balanced healthcare, just like trips to their dentist.  We care for problems in one of 3 phases of care:
• Acute Care – relieve pain: Weak and unstable spine is given intensive care to help relieve symptoms
• Corrective/Rehabilitative Care – correct biomechanical problems: Regular adjustments are directed at creating stability in the joints
• Wellness Care – prevention and maintenance: Periodic adjustments correct minor problems and help to assure optimum healing.

What is Active Release Techniques (ART)?
ART is a hands-on therapy that corrects muscular and soft tissue problems caused by the formation of scar tissue that is laid down due to cumulative trauma (overuse) or following injury.  ART provides a way to locate, diagnose, and treat the underlying causes of cumulative trauma disorders (repetitive strain injuries) which result in symptoms of numbness, tingling, burning, or aching. See the “Active Release Techniques” link for more information.

What exactly is Acupuncture?
Acupuncture literally means “needle piercing”, the practice of inserting fine needles into the skin to stimulate specific anatomic points into the body for therapeutic purposes.  The net result of these points being stimulated is an inhibition of the incoming pain sensation locally, a general, morphinelike, pain-relieving effect throughout the body, an anti-inflammatory effect, and a general sense of improved well-being.