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SuperMouse's avatar

Have you been helped by chiropractic?

Asked by SuperMouse (30788points) March 20th, 2009

Inspired this discussion, I thought the topic deserved its own thread. Have you seen a chiropractor? Do you feel it helped? Do you go regularly? My experience has been neither great nor awful. I’ve never felt the immense relief or improvement I have heard others rave about. That being said, I’ve never really had a bad experience with a chiropractor either.

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12 Answers

bythebay's avatar

I’ve got some back issues (tilted Coccyx) and I started out with a chiropractor. It always felt odd and slightly scary. That said, I would feel temporary relief afterward (maybe a week). I moved on to physical therapy after a couple of incidents where I experienced extreme tightness in my back. After wasting 2 months, I finally stumbled upon a fantastic PT. She changed my life…really! After we got me “straightened out” she suggested a monthly massage, regular Pilates, and a twice yearly visit to the PT.

Truth be told, the massage/Pilates combo has worked wonders! So did the chiropractor help? Not really, but it also didn’t hurt.

dynamicduo's avatar

I love listening to the chiropractic discussion. Here is my experience.

I’ve been to a chiropractor before. It’s this place actually. I’ve had discussions with my regular chiropractor there many times about me being skeptical about chiropractic. But this guy is not a quack that believes all causes are caused by a crooked spine, and that he can heal anything with his magical hands. He’s a guy that believes that it’s important to have a well balanced spine because 1) it’s the nerve road to your brain, if the road gets pinched or pressured, problems can occur, and 2) our bones do change as we age, the discs between vertebrae can get damaged and wear down over time and usage and it’s better for them to be aligned than not aligned.

I started going there in my teens when I was having strange undiagnosable problems (a long story). We went through a gradually decreasing regimen of treatments and examining to correct imbalances in my spine. Ultimately, I cannot say whether his treatment helped me, but it certainly did not harm me at all. At the end of the treatment my back was pretty well aligned as shown by their neato evaluation device, electrode based I believe, I know he explained it to me when I asked but I’ve forgotten now.

I went there a few years ago when I had hurt myself running for the train. He did a new evaluation, suggested a simple treatment schedule (which fit into my mom’s insurance limits, of course) and we completed it. Again, I was back to normal by the end of the treatment but I can’t know whether he had an effect or not.

My dad had a lot of back problems and was treated by the same doctor. My dad is now out and geocaching all day, hiking in the woods and scampering around. Again, did chiropractic help? I’ve asked him and he does think that it did help, and he’s the biggest skeptic I know (he had seriously bad back pain too).

One thing I do know is that my doctor was extremely respectful of the situations, never pressed unnecessary treatment, would offer any help or explanation of anything (and I was a curious kid, so I asked a lot), and was in general one of the kindest and sympathetic doctors I have met to date.

Based on my experiences so far, I am not ready to discredit chiropractic completely without further evidence that the style I have been shown, the more respectful style, causes damage other than to the pocketbook.

Also to note is that I’m Canadian with Canadian insurance, so my mom’s work covered 90% of the costs of all of the treatments, and the chiropractic office took strides to make sure we were scheduled for what the insurance covered. Then again, all doctors and dentists here tend to do that, it’s just one consequence of the system we have.

I just exited a stretch of back pain recently, and my work insurance covers a chunk of chiropractic per year, so maybe I’ll go for an evaluation to see how out of whack my spine is now.

blondie411's avatar

I believe that a chiropractor is a short term solution to a long term problem. People even say that they feel relief for a week or so and then the pain is gone. For some people that short burst of relief is worth it but to me I would think working with a physical therapist and strengthening your back along with relaxing back massages would be more beneficial. Yes it would be more work but then again nothing that is worth it isn’t work.

A_Beaverhausen's avatar

not me, but my mom swears by hers. she sometimes throws out her back and she just goes in for a ‘crack’ and magically is better again!

pekenoe's avatar

In my experience it depends on the pre adjustment prep. Chiros that use heat and relaxation on the patient before treatment have better results than chiros who cold crack you. They do some good but not near as much as a good deep tissue massage.

My money is on the massage, does more good long term and feels really good whilst you’re getting “adjusted”

SuperMouse's avatar

I have always found it very disconcerting when they crack my neck. The sound it makes always freaks me out. Between that, their obsession with subluxations and the fact that I never felt much better after being adjusted, I have decided chiropractic isn’t for me.

rancid's avatar

Doc Sharshon was a crazy dude. One time his office was a hole-in-wall place in a seedy neighborhood. I had a girlfriend at the time, and she said he’d help. She been wrong about a whole lot of things, but that was one thing she right about. He had this old, weatherbeaten bench, that looked like a sadldle been left in the sun too long.

His fingers were rough, like an old cowhand/s. He was also bald. I never was trusting of a bald man. I don’t know why. He’d take you in and set you up on that bench, face in a hole (which was real hard for me to trust). But his fingers. You could feel something in them. He’d press and test and pretty soon he had an idea, and you’d get some kind of wedge under one hip, and then turn over again, and get some back cracking, and then, hoo boy.

He’s life your head, and move it side to side, up and down, all around—as much as you could take. First time he did that, my neck was so tense he couldn’t move me at all. I was trying to realax it up, but it was too hard for me. Took me about ten sessions before I trusted him enough to do that.

The first time he cracked my neck was amazing! Everything all loosed up and slipped into place, and the pain went away instantly. After that, I never wanted to go to anyone else. He moved his office to his home and stopped taking patients. Too much bother, he said. Insurance or something, but he still saw me. We’d talk, exchange stories, even get to philosophizing. he like me, I think.

He took up ministering or something. GHot him some fake diploam that allowed him to marry people, and then he and his girlfriend would run around making up these ceremonies for people. It was rough out there, and I guess you did what you had to, but I never saw how he could make money marrying people. I’d ask him about it sometime, but he wasn’t too explicit with the details.

I always got instant relief from him, and I believed in chiropractic after that. But I been to any number of chirophrators since then, and none of them were like Doc Sharshon. He died, is why. Just up an died, and he was pretty young, too. So I had to go to them others, but they never were like Doc Sharshon. He was one of a kind.

btko's avatar

I injured my back quite badly on a trampoline a couple years ago and for a few months after I was having a really hard time with my back. I decided to finally try a chiropractor and after 3 or 4 sessions I felt a lot better.

But as people are saying, if you don’t strengthen your back as well it will just slip out of alignment again. I don’t go to the chiropractor anymore, but it was a great help at the time.

lollipop's avatar

I am currently going to a chiropractor and have been now for about 2 months and to be honest this particular one that I am seeing I am still not sure he is as good as others I have been to in the past. But when I started I was in real agony and found I have a lot of problems so with that being said, I started out going twice a week, then decreased to once a week after a while, and now I go a week an a half in between, I tried two weeks and it was too long the time I did that so have gone back to shorter time. I still have issues but the original problem isn’t bothering me now, other areas have started…so not sure if I am getting better or not.

His way of doing things is a little rough in my opinion but I get results eventually. He did quite a few tests on me during the first visit including x-rays and also a new one that is an ‘electrical current’ thing I am not sure what it does though. The thing I don’t like is if he is busy when we go in, he seems too ‘distracted’ to pay attention to what he needs to do with me, and seems to forget from one visit to the next. I don’t like that.

One note, I thought I had a rib out several months ago, in fact late summer and it had bothered me since off an on, well he discovered that and fixed that without me saying anything he told me I had it out! My boyfriend hadn’t believed me when I had told him before that.

rancid's avatar

One chiropractor I tried after Doc Sharshon, said to put on ice when my back gets hurting. Since then, that’s what I do, and I don’t need to go to see them any more. Ice really helps. This is good, except when I am in the bush, and there is no ice. But then, I am not living the soft life I live now, and my back did not go out.

Darwin's avatar

My sister and my former boss swear by chiropractic. However, I have very limited experience with it. I injured a knee and had an impossible time getting an appointment with my regular doctor (6 weeks for the soonest) so I tried a chiropractor. He said the injury was too deep and not something he could treat, called my insurance, called a sports medicine guy, and got me an appointment for the next day.

In other words, although chiropractic did nothing for me, the chiropractor helped me immensely.

Nowadays I am in physical therapy for a back problem. That combined with exercises seems to be doing the trick.

casheroo's avatar

I saw one my entire pregnancy, and it was amazing. He wasn’t the best chiropractor though, but he got the job done. I always felt better seeing a chiro, than getting a massage. He would help me relax and messed with my hips. I should have kept going, because I did have a hard time getting my son past my pelvic bones..I pushed for so long. Either while pregnant, or while giving birth, I broke my tailbone. I was in severe pain while I think it happened from the weight gain. I could barely sit. So, going to a chiro really helped align everything.
After giving birth, I saw a different chiro, and he was amazing. My mother was seeing him also, and he really helped her back. He would do a lot of relaxation techniques, before doing anything. Also, he wasn’t one of those “you need to come three times a week for it to be effective” that’s bull, and any time I hear that..I assume the chiro is trying to get money out of me. I saw the second guy every two weeks and it helped. I then took up pilates which made me feel even better.

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