We have listed the questions we are asked most often. If you should have a question that is not answered here, please call or email your question to Dr. Scheitel.
Is chiropractic care safe?
Absolutely. Compared to other medical treatments, which include medication and surgery, chiropractic is by far the safest. It is estimated that 140,000 people in the USA die each year from drug-related reactions and nearly 100,000 people die as a result of medical errors. Malpractice insurance companies evaluate the risks of all professions, and charge a premium based on the risk the profession poses. Chiropractors have by far the lowest insurance premium of all medical providers. Even though thousands of chiropractic adjustments are made each year, only a few complaints are registered.
What is an adjustment?
A gentle, carefully placed thrust which moves vertebrae into their proper position. The chiropractor usually delivers the adjustment by hand, but occasionally uses other instruments. The purpose of the adjustment is to correct a subluxation.
What is a subluxation?
Subluxation refers to a spinal bone (vertebra) that is not in its right position or not moving in its normal range of motion. Misaligned vertebrae are irritating nerves and blood vessels, which in turn affects the way your body communicates with your spine. Subluxations are the cause of many pains and dysfunctions in muscles and organs. The body's natural ability to heal itself is greatly improved with the subluxation removed.
Does the adjustment hurt?
Most chiropractic adjustments are not only virtually painless, they actually feel great and relieving. In the cases of a recent injury, inflamed tissue may react to some adjustments and cause some discomfort. Application of ice after treatment may soothe any irritation.
What causes the "cracking" sound during an adjustment?
The sound is no reason to be concerned. The sound is not coming from the bones themselves. It's coming from a lubricant called synovial fluid that's found in every joint. That fluid contains dissolved gases. During the adjustment the joints are slightly separated to move into proper position. This releases the built-up pressure on the fluid and gasses and creates a "pop" similar to the release of pressure when a cork comes off a bottle of Champagne. Not all patients "pop" and not all adjusting techniques produce the noise, which means an adjustment can be proper and effective, even if you do not hear any noise.
Will repeated chiropractic adjustments lead to arthritis?
There is no evidence to suggest that manipulation of the spine or other chiropractic care can lead to arthritis. On the contrary, chiropractors often care for people with arthritis by maintaining joint health. Motion is life when it comes to health.
Is it safe to crack my own back or neck?
This question is often posed to chiropractors and concern has been raised over its safety. While people might have the right idea by trying to relieve pressure on the joints, the "cracking" or "popping" of one's own back or neck is not the same as a chiropractic adjustment. The problem usually keeps coming back, which should be a clear indication that there has been no real adjustment. The cause of the spinal tension, the fixated or jammed vertebrae, has not been corrected. Even a chiropractor cannot adjust him/herself. You should not try to do it yourself either.
Is there a minimum or maximum age for a person to receive chiropractic care?
There is no age excluded from chiropractic care. Even babies can have subluxations, due to the rigors of birth. In Denmark, for example, Chiropractic Doctors are a part of the birthing team. Children's subluxations should be treated early, as they interfere with nerves that control developing muscles and organs. Joints of the body consist of cartilage growth centers that the bone grows from. Abnormal stresses on a rapidly developing spine and other bones and joints can cause them to develop abnormally. Your chiropractor can detect these problems while they're easy to correct.
Can chiropractors refer patients to other specialists?
Chiropractors are a part of a network of health-care professionals. Like other doctors, they will make referrals for patients when necessary. Chiropractors are trained to recognize risk factors and signs of disease that are outside of their scope of treatments and they will not hesitate to make referrals when it is in a patient's best interest.
Can chiropractors prescribe medication or perform surgery?
Chiropractors believe in the body's ability to heal itself and for that reason they don't prescribe medication or perform invasive procedures. They focus on providing your body with the right elements for self-restoration by restoring free-flowing communication between all parts of your body.
Should chiropractic care continue even after I feel fine?
Chiropractors are trained to detect problem areas in your spine before they develop into problem conditions or symptoms. Just because symptoms disappear, does not mean your subluxations are corrected. Regular adjustments help to maintain or support a healthy spine and nervous system. Maintenance or wellness spinal care programs, which may include advice on posture, nutrition, and exercise, can effectively prevent pain. However, how you choose to use chiropractic care is ultimately up to you. If your spine wears out, there is no solution. Because your spine directly influences the function of your nervous system, spinal decay permanently damages the nerves and spinal cord. Nearly everyone flosses and brushes their teeth even though their teeth don't hurt. Spinal adjustments are like flossing the spine. Lifetime care of the spine should be a priority!