Chiropractic FAQ’s

Following are some Frequently Asked Questions about Chiropractic

What to expect on your first visit.

The Doctors of Chiropractic at painPRO are movement therapists trained to diagnose and treat a large variety of problems with the body.  Specifically, our chiropractors take care of neuromuscular or musculoskeletal issues.  These problems with the joints, muscles, or nerves of the body can arise from injuries sustained in sports, poor posture at work, or present as aches and pains associated with your activities of daily living.  As primary care practitioners, a medical doctor’s referral is not required to see a chiropractor.  Our team of Chiropractors value accurate diagnosis, evidence-based treatments, and open dialogue with our patients.
Upon your arrival at the clinic, you will be asked to fill out a short medical history regarding your complaint.  This document is used by the Chiropractor to start the diagnostic process.  Your Chiropractor will ask you questions regarding how you may have become injured, how long your complaint has bothered you, and what, if any, previous treatment you have received.  Once a clear understanding of your case is obtained, the Chiropractor will perform a thorough physical examination to identify the structures that are causing your pain.  This will involve simple movements of the joints, palpation of the affected muscles, strength and reflex testing, and specialized tests called orthopedic tests that help your chiropractor to arrive at a diagnosis.
At this point, the Chiropractor will let you know what joints, muscles, or nerves have been affected, and explain the options that are available for treatment.  These options may include specific adjustments of the spine or extremities, soft tissue therapy, electrical modalities like Shockwave therapy, and education regarding home exercises or stretches that are specifically tailored to your condition.  Your Chiropractor will then go over the Consent to Chiropractic Treatment form with you, and allow you the opportunity to ask any questions you may have.  You and your chiropractor can then start on the road to relief of pain, recovery from injury, and improved performance in sport and in life!

What is Chiropractic?

The word “chiropractic” comes from ancient Greek and means “done by hand.”

Our Chiropractors are therapists in manual adjustment of the spine and other joints. Adjustments help relieve pain and restore normal functioning to the spine, joints and supporting structures of the body – so you can enjoy your everyday activities again as quickly as possible.

Chiropractors are also trained to prescribe therapeutic exercise,in addition to recommending rehabilitation and injury prevention strategies.

What is an adjustment?

An adjustment is a highly skilled and precise movement usually applied by hand to a joint of the body.  When a joint is adjusted, a gas bubble escapes causing the popping noise you may have heard about.

Our focus at painPRO is to provide adjustments as a last resort since Chiropractors are trained in many other evidence informed manual techniques.

Is Chiropractic adjustment safe?

Chiropractic is widely recognized as one of the safest, drug-free, non-invasive therapies available for the treatment of headache, and neck and back pain. It has an excellent safety record. However, no health treatment is completely free of potential adverse effects. Even common over-the-counter medicines carry a risk.

Most patients experience immediate relief following an adjustment, however, some may experience temporary pain, stiffness or slight swelling. Some patients may also experience temporary dizziness, local numbness, or radiating pain. However, adverse effects associated with spinal adjustment are typically minor and short-lived.

When should I see a Chiropractor?

Many patients seek Chiropractic treatment for wellness care. Others, like seniors, find that treatment helps them to maintain mobility and good range of motion. Pain should never become a way of life, especially when there is qualified help available.

There are many reasons to seek Chiropractic care: Work, accidents, sports injuries, household chores, even the stress of daily living can cause painful joint and spinal problems. Even if you do not have painful symptoms, Chiropractic care can help you maintain healthy spine and joint function.

Here are some of the most common reasons why more than 4 million Canadians visit a Chiropractor each year:

  • Back pain
  • Neck pain
  • Headache
  • Whiplash
  • Strains and sprains from daily activities
  • Repetitive strain injuries
  • Work and sports-related injuries
  • Arthritis
  • Restricted movement in the back, shoulders, neck or limbs
  • General health and well-being

What are some of the benefits of Chiropractic care?

Chiropractic care can:

  • Improve movement in your neck, shoulders, back and torso
  • Improve your posture
  • Provide relief from headaches, neck and back pain
  • Help prevent work-related muscle and joint injuries
  • Lead to enhanced athletic performance
  • Improve your flexibility and range of motion
  • Relieve pregnancy-related back ache
  • Correct gait and foot problems

Do I have to have a referral from my MD?

Chiropractors are legislated as primary care professionals in every province in Canada. This means that patients can consult them directly. However, Chiropractors often work closely with medical doctors, many of whom refer to chiropractors when they believe Chiropractic treatment will help alleviate a patient’s condition. Similarly, Chiropractors frequently refer to medical doctors when necessary.

Can Chiropractic care cure other ailments besides back pain?

Chiropractic care cannot “cure” every ailment, but there is some evidence to indicate that adjustments may have a beneficial effect on a variety of conditions. Adjustment may alleviate some of the secondary or referred pain, arising from the response of the musculoskeletal structures to the primary cause.

Are there many athletes who use Chiropractic?

Yes. Many amateur and professional athletes use chiropractic treatment as part of their overall health care, fitness and maintenance program. Chiropractic is often used to improve muscle and joint conditioning, which has a direct effect on an athletic performance. Treatment works to improve biomechanical function and enhance overall conditioning, important in situations where there is continuous repetitive movement. Chiropractic care also help athletes fine-tune their muscles and joints for high level performance, and may reduce long term wear and tear. Finally, treatment can be used to prevent, and sometime shorten, the healing time of injuries.

Athletes most often select treatment to improve their performance, where as the average consumer will select Chiropractic care to help manage aches and pains. In some cases treatment will be similar, but in all cases a treatment plan will be developed according to the goals and condition of each patient. In the case of professional and elite athletes, Chiropractors often work in conjunction with other health care professionals, including medical doctors and/or sports Medicine Doctors, Massage Therapists and Physiotherapists.

Does Chiropractic care require X-rays?

No. Although X-rays can play an important role in diagnosis they are not required prior to treatment. In certain situations you may be referred to an MD to get X-Rays should the Chiropractor uncover any concerns during their assessment.

What is the difference between Physiotherapy and Chiropractic?

While there are many similarities between Chiropractors and Physiotherapists, including the conditions that they treat, the essential differences start with the educational process. Chiropractors are trained primarily in manipulation of the spine and extremities. These are Low Amplitude High Velocity thrusts that restore motion into joint segments allowing for proper function of all systems associated with that joint, typically muscles and nerves. The Chiropractors at painPRO are also adept at prescribing exercises, performing soft tissue work, and solving musculoskeletal problems from a wholistic point of view. Since they are a part of an integrated team, they also rely on the expertise of their Registered Massage Therapist colleagues when more soft tissue work is required, and their Physiotherapist colleagues when more exercise prescription attention or IMS needling is needed. There is overlap in conditions treated, and in some cases techniques used, but whether the patient starts with a Chiropractor, or a Physiotherapist, they will be the center of a truly integrated team putting their best interests first.

Will the Chiropractor crack my neck?

The Chiropractor has been trained in manipulation of the spine, which is proven to be safe and effective, but will always make clinically relevant suggestions based on your needs, as well as present treatment options tailored specifically to the kind of therapy you are seeking. In other words, if you do not want them to, they can do something different in order to help you. If however, there is clinical indications to do so, you have given informed consent, and it is what you prefer, then rest assured you are in great hands!

What techniques does the Chiropractor use?

The Chiropractors at painPRO use a multitude of manual and instrument assisted techniques to get the job done or help with their assessments. This includes but is not limited to: Diversified, Gonstead, Sacral Occipital Technique, Active Release Techniques, Graston (and other IASTM or Instrument Assisted Soft Tissue Manipulation tools), Functional Movement Systems (Screen and Selective Functional Movement Assessment), Activator, Drop Table, Neurokinetic Technique (or NKT), Shockwave Therapy…

Does treatment from a Chiropractor hurt?

Typically, the classic manipulative treatment, or adjustment, from a Chiropractor does not hurt. Occasionally, when treatment is directed to an already painful part of the body, some discomfort may ensue, but effective communication between practitioner and patient allows this to be minimal.

Why see a Chiropractor? (from

Improved movement in your neck, shoulders, back and torso, Better posture, Relief from headaches, neck and back pain, Prevention of work-related muscle and joint injuries, Enhanced athletic performance, Improved flexibility, Relief of pregnancy-related backache, Correction of gait and foot problems.

When should you see a Chiropractor?

The best time to see your Chiropractor is immediately after you suffer an injury or within two days of feeling pain that is not associated with a trauma. If you find that aches are limiting you from sleeping well, sitting or walking, it is recommended that you see your Chiropractor as soon as possible. You never need a referral to see a Chiropractor. The earlier you see your Chiropractor, the greater chance there is for a full recovery. Sometimes small problems can escalate into big medical challenges that can impact your life significantly. Chiropractors are primary care providers and can support your recovery from start to finish. Patients who suffer for a long time without Chiropractic care may wish to seek out a second opinion from a Chiropractic doctor if their current medical treatments are not effective. Many patients get to know their bodies and can sense the need for a visit to maintain optimal spinal health. They may feel like something is “off”, unbalanced or tight in their posture and seek out treatment to correct it.

What Can I Expect When Visiting a Chiropractor?

What is a chiropractic visit like? A visit to the chiropractor begins when you walk through the clinic door and are greeted by the receptionist. Visits are very similar to what you might expect at any health clinic.

“All our treatments are evidence informed, natural, non-invasive interventions for pain and dysfunction present in the body’s soft tissue and joints.”

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