In this space, you will find frequently asked questions and answers about Chiropractic
What is Chiropractic?
Is chiropractic a medical specialty?
No, Chiropractic is an alternative health profession distinct from the western medical profession. It is studied in chiropractic universities. The required hours of study to obtain a doctorate in chiropractic are similar to those for the medical profession, often containing many of the same subjects.
In the career of chiropractic, neither pharmacology nor surgery are studied, but the study of physiology, anatomy, radiology and specific chiropractic manual techniques are studied in greater depth.
What are chiropractic treatments? Are they massages?
No, absolutely not. The chiropractor will preform specific chiropractic adjustments to the vertebrae and other joints in order to re-establish normal movement and function and to remove any nervous system interference.
The adjustments are done by hand, generally quick and very effective and require a high level of skill acquired after years of study. It has nothing to do with any of the techniques/movements used on the skin and muscles by massage.
Sessions and chiropractic care
How long is a session?
It depends. The first visit with a full patient history and associated exams preformed by the chiropractor generally takes a bit longer (20-45 min). Thereafter, each adjustment depends on what the chiropractor finds specific to each patients neurology (15-30 min).
How do the first visits work?
1st Visit: We will go over your complete history and preform a series of specific neurologic and orthopedic exams with which we will provide you with a complete report of findings. We recommend you bring any information (tests, x-rays, MRI, etc) to your first visit to help us have a more complete history.
2nd Visit: The second visit will consist in an informative session about how your nervous system functions in conjunction with your health and how to care for your health from inside out. We will also explain what you can expect from your chiropractic care.
3rd Visit: We will give you a complete report of findings and comment the specifics pertaining to your case in a manner that all questions and doubts can be answered. What we hope is that you have a very clear understanding of what you can expect from chiropractic care and to make sure you feel absolutely comfortable before we start with the adjustments.
There is nothing to be afraid of with Chiropractic
What is the "cracking" sound? Is it normal, painful or helpful?
No, the cracking sound is not dangerous. It is the release of inoffensive gases that have accumulated due to the lack of movement it the specific articulation. Chiropractic is not an aggressive therapy. Unlike prescription medication which use chemical and biological substances to invade the body with the attempt to cure from outside to in, chiropractic is non-invasive and does not use any foreign agents to heal the body. Chiropractic works directly with the nervous system in order to increase the capacity for the body to self-recover and self-maintain allowing the body to heal itself without the use of external substances.
During this process of returning the body to its own normal, healthy state, the patient may experience physiological changes. Some patients may note varying degrees of symptoms throughout the healing process (tiredness, soreness, excess energy, etc.). While others may note immediate results without passing through the previously mentioned phases. The chiropractor will work on each patient according to what their nervous system needs specifically each day.
Can chiropractic make me worse than I already am?
Millions of people of all ages, with all types of varying degree of case severity are seen by chiropractors world wide on a daily basis and many are finding solutions, without side-effects with chiropractic adjustments.
This is due to two factors: the first is the high degree of professionalism and qualification of these health professionals from thorough university formation, including 1-2 years of clinical internship under the supervision of experienced chiropractors; and the second being the fact that adjustments do not have negative side-effects.
Is chiropractic safe?
Chiropractic, a dangerous therapy?
Chiropractic is a health profession recognized by the World Health Organization that deals with disorders of the neuromusculoskeletal system, and the effects of these disorders on health in general. Scientific studies place chiropractic care as one of the safest and most effective health procedures for treating these disorders. The chiropractic professional receives a minimum of 5 years of higher education that guarantees the quality and safety of the service provided.
Given that in Spain this new profession has not yet been approved, it is very important to go to a true chiropractor because there are people who take advantage of this legal vacuum to perform manipulations of the spine without higher studies in chiropractic. Therefore, if you are looking for a chiropractor, we recommend that you consult the website of the Spanish Chiropractic Association for professionals who do have the corresponding degree.
- Organización Mundial de la Salud. Directrices sobre Formación Básica e Inocuidad. Available at URL: http://apps.who.int/medicinedocs/documents/s14104s/s14104s.pdf
- Thiel HW, Bolton JE, Docherty S, Portlock JC. Safety of chiropractic manipulation of the cervical spine: a prospective national survey. Spine (Phila Pa 1976). 2007 Oct 1;32(21):2375-8
- Rubinstein SM, Knol DL, Leboeuf-Yde C, van Tulder MW. Benign adverse events following chiropractic care for neck pain are associated with worse short-term outcomes but not worse outcomes at three months. Spine (Phila Pa 1976). 2008 Dec 1;33(25):E950-6
- Oliphant D. Safety of spinal manipulation in the treatment of lumbar disk herniations: a systematic review and risk assessment. J Manipulative Physiol Ther. 2004 Mar-Apr;27(3):197-210
- Bronfort G, Haas M, Evans R, Leininger B, Triano J. Effectiveness of manual therapies: the UK evidence report. Chiropractic & Osteopathy. 2010;18:3. doi:10.1186/1746-1340-18-3
Who and in what ways can someone receive chiropractic care?
Can the elderly, children and/or expecting mothers receive chiropractic care?
Not only can they receive chiropractic care, they all should! These particular groups have important needs in order to maintain an optimal level of health. Chiropractic care is highly recommended and beneficial for the elderly, children and expecting mothers.
If I am taking medication and under care, will I have to stop taking my medication?
Chiropractic care has zero incompatibility with other therapies. However, it is necessary to mention to your chiropractor other treatments you are using.
Chiropractic in Spain
Are chiropractors part of a professional governmental association?
No, at this moment the degree of Doctor of Chiropractic has not yet been approved by the Spanish government which prevents chiropractors from having an Official Professional Association.
The only way to verify the validity and authenticity of a chiropractic degree is by associating with the only regulatory body in Spain; The Spanish Chiropractic Association (Asociacion Espanola de Quiropractica- AEQ). Founded in 1986 and approved by the Ministry of Health (Ministerio de Sanidad) and the Ministry of the Interior (Ministerio del Interior). The AEQ is the organizing and legal representative body of the chiropractic profession in Spain.
Why is chiropractic so unknown in Spain?
This is the exact question the chiropractors in Spain have been and continue to ask of the Spanish government.
The chiropractic profession is regulated in neighboring countries and found through out all of Europe. It is recognized by the European Parliament in Strasbourg, by the World Health Organization and continues to expand globally each year.
There are more than 120,000 chiropractors world wide mainly found in advanced countries (Western Europe, North America, Australia, etc.). Research has shown that in many of these countries, chiropractic care had significant results in cost-effectiveness, safety and superior satisfaction from the many benefits obtained from chiropractic adjustments, leading to its integration into many countries primary health care systems.
How many chiropractors are there is Spain?
In Spain there are nearly 300 titled practicing chiropractors. The good news is that this number is increasing each year. In the United States, there are 95,000 chiropractors and chiropractic is the third largest health care profession.
What is the difference between chiropractic and other health professions?
Chiropractic emphasizes in optimizing the nervous system, offering numerous benefits to all those who wish to improve their quality of life and who do not present a specific symptomatology.