When you meet your chiropractor or osteopath for the first time, he/she will make a full medical assessment before any treatment commences. You will be asked a great deal of questions, not just about the pain or complaint that you have come in with, but also about you’re past medical history and day to day routine. Some of the questions may seem irrelevant, but they are extremely important to the chiropractor or osteopath in ensuring that the appropriate care is given. If the practitioner feels that chiropractic or osteopathy is not suitable for you, you will be referred to your GP, a specialist or another therapist in the practice.
Once your case history has been taken, your practitioner will examine you. The examination will concentrate on your neuro-musculo-skeletal system (nerves, muscles and joints), but it may also be necessary to check other things such as your blood pressure and pulse, or listen to your lungs or abdomen. X-rays may also be taken, if the chiropractor or osteopath feels it is necessary.
Gowns are made available for you to wear for the examination, as well as any following treatments.
Before treatment starts, your practitioner will tell you what is wrong with you, what can be done about it and what you should expect when you receive your first treatment. You may also be told about exercises or changes to your lifestyle or diet that may be beneficial.
Treatment is different for every patient and is dependent on your age, fitness and diagnosis. Chiropractors and osteopaths use a wide range of gentle, specific adjustments/ manipulations, done by hand, to free joints in the spine and other areas of the body that are not moving properly. Other techniques used are different types of soft tissue massage and joint articulation to release tension, stretch muscles, to help relieve pain and mobilise your joints.
Other treatment types include ultrasound, interferential therapy, activator therapy, Kinesio taping and dry needling. All dependant on your condition and suitability for each type.