Frequently Asked Questions About Chiropractic

Everyday my patients and people I meet seem to ask the same questions about Chiropractic. I would like to share the most common with you and explain one of the most effective forms of health care in the world. I would also like to dispel some of the common misconceptions about chiropractic.

What do chiropractors do?

Helping to restore proper spinal biomechanics and improved nervous system function begins with a case history. This gives the doctor a background about your health, such as surgeries, accidents, onset of your condition, and other details affecting your current health.

After reviewing your history and discussing your specific problem, a thorough orthopedic, neurological, chiropractic examination is performed. X-rays may be taken to uncover structural and functional problems associated with the spinal column. These examinations help identify areas of spinal malfunction and resulting nervous system deficit.

The findings of these examinations are explained and a plan of chiropractic adjustments are recommended. Progress is monitored with periodic examinations and follow-up reports.

What type of education do Chiropractic Doctors Get?

Chiropractors are doctors. Officially their title is Doctor of Chiropractic which although very impressive sounding isn't terribly easy to say. So we'll refer to them as Chiropractors.

Before North Carolina Chiropractors lay their hands on your back or neck, they have first laid their eyes on hundreds of books. They've studied for at least 8 challenging years at a university and post-graduate levels (at a Chiropractic College). Anatomy, Physiology, Neurology, Radiology, Biomechanics, X-rays and Spinal Adjusting Techniques are just a handful of the topics they've studied.

Chiropractic training doesn't stop at the end of a textbook. Far from it. Before receiving their Doctor of Chiropractic designation, Chiropractic students undergo an intensive and closely supervised internship program at a Chiropractic College Clinic. This is their true training ground, the place where they gain and perfect valuable hands-on healing skills. After years of study, Chiropractic students must pass rigorous National Board and State Licensing Board examinations. A chiropractic education never ends. North Carolina chiropractors complete postgraduate instruction for license renewal and to stay current on the latest scientific research. That, in a nutshell, is the making of a Chiropractor.

What Is An Adjustment?

A chiropractic adjustment is the art of using a specific force in a precise direction, applied to a joint that is fixated, "locked up", or not moving properly. This adds motion to the joint, helping the bones gradually return to a more normal position and motion. The purpose of this safe and natural procedure is improved spinal function, improved nervous system function, and improved health.

There are many ways to adjust the spine.

Usually the doctor's hands or a specially designed instrument delivers a brief and highly-accurate thrust. Some adjusting methods are quick, whereas others require a slow and constant pressure.

After years of training and clinical experience, each chiropractic doctor becomes highly skilled in the delivery of a variety of adjusting approaches.

Is Chiropractic Care Safe?

In the words of the New Zealand government's study, chiropractic care is "remarkably safe."

Chiropractic has an excellent safety record. It is the result of a conservative approach to health that avoids invasive procedures or addictive drugs.

A thorough case history and examination help reveal areas of the spine that may be causing nervous system malfunction. This information will be used to determine the best course of care for each patient.

Chiropractic care is a natural approach to better health that is proven safe and effective.

Why Do Children Need Chiropractic Care?

Since significant spinal trauma can occur at birth, many parents have their newborns checked for Vertebral Subluxation Complex.

Later, learning to walk, ride a bicycle, and other childhood activities can cause spinal problems. While a bandage and some comforting words can help a skinned knee, the unseen damage to the child's spine is the unique domain of a chiropractic doctor.

Many childhood health complaints that are brushed off as "growing pains" can often be traced to the spine. Regular chiropractic checkups can identify these problems and help avoid many of the health complaints seen later in adults.

Naturally, chiropractic adjusting procedures are modified to a child's spine. Most parents report that their children enjoy their chiropractic adjustments and seem healthier than other children.

Can I Adjust Myself?

Since a chiropractic adjustment is a specific force, applied in a specific direction, to a specific spinal joint, it is virtually impossible to adjust oneself.

It is possible to turn or bend or twist in certain ways to create a "popping" sound, like the sound that sometimes accompanies a chiropractic adjustment. Unfortunately, this type of joint manipulation is usually counterproductive, often making an already unstable area of the spine even more unsteady. Adjusting the spine is not for amateurs!

The best way to enjoy the healthful benefits of chiropractic is to receive adjustments from Doctor of Chiropractic. Even your doctor must seek out the services of another colleague to help restore and maintain proper spinal function.

Am I Too Old For Chiropractic Care?

More and more people are consulting chiropractic doctors, especially in their later years. With growing concerns about over-medication and the side effects of combining various prescription drugs, safe, natural chiropractic care is growing in popularity.

Restoring better spinal function can help improve mobility, vitality, endurance, and appetite. Many patients report improvement with arthritic symptoms and other chronic ailments often associated with the aging process.

The adjusting technique used by your doctor will be modified for maximum comfort and results.

As we get older and wiser, the simplicity and effectiveness of chiropractic care becomes more and more obvious.

How Long Will I Need Chiropractic Care?

Spinal problems, neglected since early childhood, may require ongoing supportive care for optimal spinal function. These long standing problems are often associated with muscle weakness, soft tissue damage and degenerative changes to the spine. Most patients find that periodic chiropractic checkups help keep them in tip-top shape. Those who are active, have stressful jobs, or want to be their very best, find that a schedule of preventative care is helpful in the maintenance of good health. Some patients seek chiropractic care only when they ache and pain becomes unbearable. While the style of "crisis management" is usually more costly and time consuming, our office stands ready to help all patients , regardless of their health goals.

How long you decide to benefit from chiropractic care is always up to you.

Any further questions on chiropractic care and/or would like to start care, please call my office at 919-467-3362.


Yours in health,


Christopher R. Outten, D.C.