Updated: Feb 26
How often should you see a chiropractor?
This is a tough question to answer because there are a lot of variables that help determine the quantity of care needed. We are going to do our best to address 3 components that can help you determine if you are getting the right care, and not being take advantage of.
1) Understanding the healing process.
2) Understanding your pain.
3) Understanding what you should do when you start feeling better.
Understanding the healing process
We have all wished our injuries would go away overnight. We wake up with pain and think if we just wait it out it will go away on its own, but it doesn't. Healing takes time, but it also takes participation from you. What do we mean when we say healing takes participation from you? Imagine you have a cut on the knuckle of your middle finger. It is bleeding and stings every time you go to bend your finger. The active participation would be to clean it out, bandage it up, and avoid bending it for a few days to allow healing to take place. Does this mean you can never bend your finger again? No, but if you actively participate in the healing process you can get back to bending your finger a lot faster than ignoring it. Participating in the healing process will speed up your recovery.
Understanding your pain
Pain is a difficult thing to understand and can be even more difficult to figure out. The best way to understand it is to feel the change. It might become less intense or less frequent as time progresses. You will have good days and bad days, but you will notice the bad days are not as bad and the good days will become more frequent. Using the finger analogy above, you know bending your finger will hurt, so you refrain from bending it as often and give it time to heal. Sure, there will be times when you have to bend it and feel the pain, but once you straighten it out the pain will subside and healing can continue. You should be able to feel a change and notice things are improving. If you feel like there has been no change, then you might need to change the treatment you are receiving.
Understanding what you should do when you start feeling better
You are feeling better but for some reason are still being asked to come back week after week and it feels like you can never leave. Do you have to go to a chiropractor forever? No, you do not have to go to a chiropractor forever. By taking an active role in your healing process you can speed up your recovery time and have lasting results! Some people elect to continue with "maintenance" type care to make sure nothing else sneaks up. This is totally up to you. It is okay to not do the "maintenance" type care as well. If you were taught the tools to keep yourself healthy and actively engaged in your care, there might be no reason for you to continue.
Determining the quantity of care is difficult, hopefully by understanding the healing process, pain, and what it means when you are starting to feel better will help you determine if you have been over "prescribed" visits. Using the finger analogy, if all you are doing is putting a band aid on the cut and not actively participating in the healing process, then 3x a week might be you. If you are actively participating and changing the bandage, avoiding certain movements with your finger, then the healing process can be a lot faster and 3x a week is too much. If you are wanting to finally fix the issues you are dealing with and actively participate in your care, you well get results faster and that last longer.
As always, please remember that while online information is a great place to start it does not replace a thorough examination and care under the supervision of a trained medical professional. Our Sun Prairie chiropractor Dr. Logan Georgeson is a trained medical professional and can try to answer all of your questions. If you’re in pain, looking for answers, and feel like you have tried everything, or want help getting started, contact us, we would love to help! If you have questions about chiropractic care, give us a call! We are here to help you move well and encourage you to move often so you can achieve freedom from pain!