What to Expect
Important Knowledge for our New Patients
Welcome! We are glad you have chosen to seek healing in our office. In order to better help us help you, we have created this handout. Please read it thoroughly.
Your Chiropractic Experience
Our purpose is to serve you faithfully in all matters pertaining to your Chiropractic Health Care.
Chiropractic is a distinct science of healing, based on well-demonstrated evidence that health comes from within you. Once you begin your care, we expect you to continue until stabilization is achieved. By stabilization we mean that you are “holding” the vertebra in “place” and are free of nerve interference. It takes time to get sick and time to get well.
After Your Exam: The doctor will work up a diagnosis and treatment plan for you. She will also prescribe stretches and exercises for you to do at home. If your case shows need, she will also recommend support belts, orthotics, or traction devices. Nutritional advice may also be recommended. She may decide further evaluation or studies as needed for diagnosing your case. What is a diagnosis? A diagnosis is coming to a decision about your case and the treatment plan is how to manage getting you better. How much better? That is something that varies from case to case and will be gone over with you during your 1st appointment. Periodic evaluations will be scheduled to monitor your progress, update your history and address any new conditions or new concerns you may have. Questionnaires are designed to help stimulate your thought processes. All of this will be gone over by your doctor on subsequent visits after your exam. It generally takes the doctor 1-1 ½ hours to prepare this plan and another employee 15 to 30 min. to get together the handouts, stretches, and exercises to be gone over with you. The office closes every Tuesday for the doctor to do this. So, sometime after the 1st Tuesday from your exam, she can go over your diagnosis and treatment plan. The exercises may come later.
What to Expect during your treatment appointment
When you arrive for your treatment, you’ll leave your shoes in the shoe box and bring your purse and coat back with you.
MEN: Please remove all ties, tie pins, wallets, keys, change, etc. Please remove all supports and/or trusses.
WOMEN: Please remove dangling earrings or necklaces; no girdles or foundations; please loosen tight- neck dresses or tops.
DO NOT PUT ON ANY PERFUMES OR COLOGNES AND PLEASE SHOWER OR BATHE PRIOR TO YOUR APPOINTMENT! Please respect that some people have allergies or asthma in this office.
You will be asked about your symptoms at each visit. At this time, what we are looking for is whether you have had any new accidents or injuries since your last visit. If yes, what symptoms do you have to these areas that you have not previously mentioned, and has this area ever had previous trauma. Example: You sprained your ankle seven years ago and now just re-sprained it. We are also looking to see if you have exacerbated (increased) the amount of injury to an area already under care in our office. We also like information regarding the last treatment, or if you are too sore to be worked on in an area.
During your course of care you may experience something we call retracing. As your initial symptoms go through the process of healing, old traumas that may not have had proper or complete healing will reoccur. This is one of the reasons full spine x-rays are taken, as they help us be aware of what is to come. We do not, however, routinely take x-rays of ankles, knees, shoulders, etc., so these reoccurrences are important to report to us, as we may tailor future care to help these areas once your initial symptoms have decreased. Your changes will include muscular, organ, and skin changes because your nerves go to these regions; at first these symptoms may seem to be getting worse. It’s much like starting a new physical fitness program – at first you experience some pain, but soon you experience improved body function and organ health.
Additional Important Information
You will be prescribed exercises and stretches. We will first prescribe them for pain relief. Once your symptoms are less painful we will recommend exercises that have to do with getting more normal movement into stuck muscles, stuck fascia and stuck joints. The next stage involves stabilization; getting better control for injured, degenerated or inhibited joints and muscles. The last group of exercises that will be given to you are for strength training In addition, getting cardiovascular exercises 3 or more times a week is recommended…e.g. walking a mile, swimming an hour, riding a bicycle, walking the golf course.
SLEEPING POSITION From a health perspective, the best position for sleep is on your back with a pillow under your knees. The pillow should be comfortable for you and help take pressure off the small of your back. The second-best position is on your side with a pillow between your knees. The knee pillow needs to be thick enough to keep your thighs hip-width apart. You neck needs a thicker pillow or two pillows stacked so that your head does not tip towards the bed and avoid laying directly on your shoulder, instead pull your shoulder a little forward to avoid compressing the neurovascular supply to your arm resulting in tingling. The most abnormal position is on the stomach, with the head turned to one side. This causes imbalance in muscle tone, particularly in the neck and jaw region. Since the neck is structurally the weakest part of the spine, sleeping on the stomach insidiously produces a loss of integrity in this area. Often stomach sleepers also throw one or both arms above their head which can lead to pain in the shoulders as well. If you awaken and are on your stomach (or side), gently roll over on your back and rest there for at least 10 minutes before getting up. This will generally relieve any tension that developed from sleeping in the wrong position, but will not undo long term affects.
WATER There is a direct relation between a person’s fluid balance and his/her well being. For an accurate measure, multiply your weight in pounds by 0.5. The numbers generated gives you the ounces of water you should drink each day. Most joint pain and organ dysfunction such as gall bladder and kidney stones can be attributed to dehydration. Gradually increase your intake over a four week period. When you first start drinking the correct amount, your joints may swell from being dehydrated and you may urinate a lot; however, after 3 weeks your body should re-regulate. Keep in mind that soda and coffee are natural dehydrators, so for every cup that you drink, replace it with 2 cups of water.
This applies to all aspects of your life. Eat a varied, well balanced, nutritious diet. It has been said, you are what you eat. The body needs good and wholesome food to produce good and wholesome tissue. It has also been said that some people eat to live and others live to eat. If you are having difficulty maintaining your ideal weight, ask us for dietary information. We offer supplements to those that need and want them. Limit as much as possible such items as carbonated drinks (especially colas), beer, alcohol, tea, coffee, salt, tobacco, white sugar, and white flour products. Practice both internal and external cleanliness. Be aware of your posture; constantly try to improve it. Do not sit with your legs crossed for long periods. If possible take a nap or rest during the day.
Tell your friends only the truth about Chiropractic care in your case, without exaggeration or distortion. Careless expressions such as “cracking the neck,” “popping bones” and “breaking your back” tend to frighten sick, nervous, and timid people. This is especially true of children for whom Chiropractic can do so much. These people have a right to know the truth, that Chiropractic is a science, that Chiropractors have completed the same level of education as Medical Doctors, and that our adjustments are specific, skillful, and will not harm or endanger even the tiniest infant. Everyone has the right to benefit from the best health care. Thank you for showing appreciation by telling your friends, family, and loved ones about chiropractic.
We will DO OUR BEST, and we hope for your fullest cooperation. It is understood that we may dismiss any patient at any time if it becomes apparent that you are not participating in your healing process or become disrespectful to the doctor or staff.