It’s your Raleigh NC Chiropractor Dr. Jeffrey Gerdes from Carolina ChiroCare and Rehab here and in this issue I want to discuss 5 things to consider when choosing a doctor of chiropractic.
What is a Chiropractor?
A Chiropractor is a healthcare professional that diagnoses and treats musculoskeletal disorders with spinal manipulative therapy (SMT) physical therapies. SMT is often referred to as chiropractic adjustments.
Chiropractors are not Physical Therapists but are trained and licensed to perform physical therapy which in many chiropractic offices may include therapeutic exercises and stretches, laser therapy, ultrasound therapy, electrical muscle stimulation, decompression therapy (DTS), massage therapy, acupuncture, dry needling, cupping and TENS therapy.
Some common conditions frequently treated by chiropractors include:
– Low back pain
– Neck Pain
– Back Pain
– Herniated and bulging spinal discs
– Car accident injuries
– Sports injuries
– Sprains and strains
– Arthritis pain
– Carpal tunnel syndrome
– Migraine and tension headaches
So what is the best way to choose a Chiropractor?
A good start maybe to assess friends and family or your primary care physician. They may have recommendations for a chiropractor with a good reputation. You want to make sure that when you meet your chiropractor you’re comfortable with his or her personality. You want to have an open relationship where you can discuss her health concerns and ask questions freely and openly. Spine-Health.com How To Select The Best Chiropractor has some other great tips for choosing the best chiropractor…but here are my top 5.
1.) I recommend staying away from any chiropractor who requests pre payed care or a contract costing thousands of dollars upfront before beginning treatment. Nearly all of the insurance companies cover chiropractic treatment. I frequently see patients in my office who have been presented with extensive treatment plans costing thousands of dollars by the chiropractor they were consulting with. They were asked to pay for the costly and extensive treatments upfront before starting any treatment. This has been going on way far to long in the chiropractic profession. I urge any patient to be skeptical of chiropractors practicing this practice. In my chiropractic office in Raleigh I see 1-2 patients a month who encountered this scenario and they are very rightfully so skeptical and hesitant to begin chiropractic care. A chiropractic treatment trial of 4-6 weeks where after a reevaluation is performed and discussed is sufficient for most conditions.
2.) Consider how long the chiropractor has been in practice. While an older Chiropractor may have been practicing longer a newer Chiropractor may be more up to date on his education and techniques. He may have more convenient office hours are offer different services that are congruent with your needs. Consider your Chiropractor’s educational experience. Review his resume or CV (curriculum vitae). You want to choose a chiropractor who continues their postdoctoral education and is involved in their community. Raleigh NC Chiropractor’s Curriculum Vitae.
3.) In general, avoid any chiropractor who continually recommends ongoing care that never ends. Your condition(s) should be improving under chiropractic care and should ultimately come to an endpoint. This end point can be different for a variety of health related conditions and may include a referral out to another health care provider if the treatment has failed or not achieved a desired outcome. Avoid chiropractors recommending long-term treatment plans such as seeing you three times a week for six months to a year then another two times a week for another six months to year.
4.) Consider choosing a Chiropractor in network with your insurance company. At Carolina ChiroCare and Rehab we are Chiropractors in Raleigh who take and are in network with Blue Cross Blue Shield, Cigna, United Health Care, Aetna and MedCost. Again avoid chiropractors who are asking for contracts or money up front to begin treatments. Here is a complete list off all the health insurance accepted at my office Chiropractors In Raleigh NC Who Take My Insurance.
5.) Find out whats techniques your potential Chiropractor uses. Some Chiropractors use specialized machines for their spinal adjustment. Other Chiropractors use their hand or perform “manual chiropractic adjustments”. Some specialize in soft tissue therapy similar to massage therapy. Some chiropractors incorporate physical therapies, massage and nutritional counseling into their treatments others do not. You may have to sample a few chiropractic offices before discovering which techniques and treatments you prefer. For some, the sounds of joints cracking makes them uncomfortable. Many chiropractors are trained in more gentle techniques like the Activator Method which I use in my office. Many Chiropractors specialize in certain areas or injuries such as working with athletes, car accident injuries, headaches, women’s health care, headache management, pediatrics, neurological conditions. Find a Chiropractor who works frequently with your population or condition(s).
I hope you found some value in this article. Until next time!
Dr. Jeffrey Gerdes, D.C.
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