More than 35 million Americans visit a chiropractor every year. Many first-time users are car accident victims. Others have endured months or years of back pain, but the remedies that have been recommended by their friends or doctors (e.g., lots of rest, prescription pain medications, limited exercises, eventual surgery, etc.) have proven ineffective.
If you or a loved one are in pain and haven’t been able to find relief, perhaps it’s time to consider chiropractic care? Once you’ve made the decision to visit a chiropractor, how do you select the best one for you? Before you decide to entrust your care to a total stranger, you should decide what qualities are most important to you? Most chiropractic care involves hands-on treatments, as the chiropractor seeks to re-align your spine to its proper position.
Here are a few tips for making the right decision:
You might be surprised to learn that your family or close friends visit a chiropractor. Maybe your primary care physician has a list of recommended chiropractors?
Check Their Credentials
Research the chiropractor’s credentials and experience. Your state licensing organization keeps records of chiropractors licensed to practice in your state. It also likely will include whether any disciplinary actions have been taken against them.
f you’re having neck pain, does the recommended chiropractor have much experience treating necks, or is he/she specialized in other areas?
Check Your Insurance
If you have multiple referrals, are any of the recommended chiropractors covered under your insurance plan? Are you prepared to pay higher fees if they are not on your plan?
If free consultations are offered, take the time to meet the chiropractor. There are many things you can learn in a face-to-face meeting.
Before you agree to treatments, find out their fees for service. Make sure it matches the information your insurer provided to you.
Does the chiropractor welcome your questions? Do they seem to care about you and your condition? Are they good listeners or do they have a remedy before you describe your symptoms?
Ask them to describe their techniques. Can they talk about treatments in a language you can understand? In general, do they encourage modest treatment regimens (lasting 3-6 weeks vs. 3-6 months)?