Modern chiropractic started in the late 1800s when Daniel David Palmer, a self-educated teacher and healer, performed the very first spinal manipulation on a patient. Chiropractic is the third largest area of medicine today. The word chiropractic comes from Greek words meaning “treatment by hand”, which is exactly what chiropractors do—they use their hands to manipulate the body and promote healing and wellness.
A doctor of chiropractic (DC), chiropractor or chiropractic physician, is a health professional who is trained to diagnose and treat disorders of the musculoskeletal and nervous systems. Chiropractors treat patients of all ages, infants, children, and adults. They believe in a traditional (non-surgical) hands-on method of treating these disorders.
The chiropractic philosophy is dependant on the following belief statements:
They use traditional diagnostic testing strategies (like x-rays, MRI, and laboratory work) along with specific chiropractic techniques that involve hands-on manipulation of the articulations (joints) of the body. Nutrition and healthy lifestyle counseling is also offered by chiropractors. Chiropractors elect not to prescribe medication, plus they do not perform operation; however, many chiropractors work with medical doctors and certainly will refer a patient when needed.
Some chiropractors dedicate their practices exclusively to finding and removing subluxations. But in addition to using manual adaptations, most chiropractors offer other treatment modalities such as the following:
Additionally, many chiropractors have considerable postgraduate training and become board certified in some specific areas of interest such as:
Chiropractic has come a long way since its beginnings. Due to its success in treating back and neck problems and as a consequence of changing approaches and recent research, chiropractic has become more accepted and is currently considered by many to be a piece of mainstream Western medicine. Actually, many hospitals finally have chiropractors on staff. Chiropractors have also been recognized by the court system as expert witnesses inside their field.
The information herein on "What's Chiropractic?" is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional, licensed physician, and is not medical advice. We encourage you to make your own health care decisions based on your research and partnership with a qualified health care professional.
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