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Debunking 3 Big Myths About Going to a Chiropractor

Updated: Oct 21, 2021

You woke up with pain this morning, just like you have every other morning for the past few years. But today is different; it's bad enough you can't reach the coffee on the top shelf of the pantry. Well, that's the final straw! Nobody messes with your ability to get your morning coffee; not even your own body! You finally decide you need to see someone about your problem, but who do you see? You remember your friend has referred you to Cumberland Chiropractic and Sports Medicine before, but all you can think of is the horror stories and stereotypes around going to a chiropractor. Well, let me put your mind at ease friend! Let's debunk some of the biggest myths surrounding going to a chiropractor.

Myth #1: You HAVE to get an x-ray on your first visit to be treated!

X-ray is a fantastic tool chiropractors use to look for very serious injuries and conditions like fractures, joint dislocations, severe arthritis, tumors, etc. Some chiropractic techniques require the doctor to take an x-ray of the spine or area of complaint to evaluate the patient for "spinal or joint misalignment and/or postural changes" to correlate to the problem being described by the patient. In some techniques, they will take an x-ray even if the patient does not have pain. Another round of x-ray may be taken after the patient has been treated for a while to see if any changes are occurring. The most recent guidelines and research show that this is NOT the standard of care. MOST patients that do not have a recent history of trauma or another underlying medical condition DO NOT require an x-ray to be treated. But your doctor should be taking a detailed medical history, performing a thorough medical and orthopedic examination, and using the most recent guidelines to decide if you need an x-ray before treatment begins. If you are in doubt about whether you need an x-ray or not before treatment, make sure to ask your doctor! They should be able to give you a firm and clear explanation for why you should or should not require films. Below is a link to the American College of Radiology guidelines for imaging criteria if you're curious about the most recent guidelines!

Myth #2: The bone is "out" and needs to be "put back in."

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