Gard Wellness

How to Find a Chiropractor

By Lance Gard DC

How to find a chiropractor is an easy question to answer…just do what we do at Gard Wellness Center. If we did not think that the way we do things is the best way to do things then we would change. We are constantly looking to improve and to offer the best level of care possible. 

A good chiropractic office should make it easy, and convenient to schedule the first visit. Intake paperwork should be comprehensive and ask questions other than just about pain. Visits should run on time and be efficient. When these details are taken care of you know that the office you are in values your time and takes pride in providing good care. 

The first visit with your chiropractor should include reviewing why you’re there and checking related areas. Meaning that you may be seeing the chiropractor for headaches, but he/she will also check your entire spine, and muscles in your neck/shoulder region to find the underlying cause. The goal of the first visit should be to gather information, including any necessary testing/procedures. We like to see an x-ray of your spine, because it gives a look into the past. An x-ray allows a chiropractor to identify areas of your spine which show signs of stress. The body reacts to stress, and a good chiropractor will want to know where those areas of the spine are located. I like to see the films and then directly palpate the spine and compare how it moves to what stressed areas I find on the x-rays. You’ll also do some different muscle/strength tests and some neurologic assessment testing as well. These help to evaluate how well your body is working together, more so than just finding out where it hurts, it is a valuable piece of the puzzle. 

After a thorough initial visit including exam and x-rays a plan should be made. The plan should focus on adjusting the spine specifically to restore motion to areas that have been restricted. This restricted movement in the spine is affecting your health in many ways other than just causing pain. Restricted movement in the spine can lead to early degenerative changes in the spine and cause other areas of your body to have to compensate. This can be other parts of your spine, or your hips, knees, ankles, etc, all of which could suffer premature degenerative changes and lead to arthritis. These degenerative compensations are what commonly cause patients to alter their activity level, or intensity, that usually leads to weight gain, which causes more stress on the spine. I see this very cycle every day. A person’s entire life is disrupted due to not receiving consistent competent chiropractic care. Many times we are able to restore much of the lost function, but it takes time to heal. Just like if you want to change your body by going to the gym, you must be consistent about it, and follow a proven plan. 

All of my chiropractic treatment plans include adjustments that are supported by some, if not all, the other modalities we’ve found to be beneficial enough to offer in our office- acupuncture, massage, laser, spinal decompression, orthotics and functional medicine. Working with the best of what works, without the need to provide drugs or surgery has been part of our approach to maximizing healthy expression since we saw our first patient. 

There are good chiropractors, and not so good chiropractors, but it’s important for everyone to have a chiropractor that’s familiar with your spine and can adjust with the intention of improving the function of your body. I’m quite sure that everyone can agree a body that functions the way it is supposed to is better than one that does not. If you’ve had a bad experience in the past I encourage you to try again. (If you had a poor experience at the dentist office you wouldn’t stop going…you’d find a better one.) Ask your friends, I’m positive at least one person you know has a chiropractor they love, and if they don’t, then maybe it is up to you to find a great chiropractor to let friends/loved ones know about.

If you’re in the Raleigh, NC / Cary, NC area we would be honored to be your choice for chiropractic care. If you’re not from around here please reach out and let me help find someone near you that can take care of you and those you care about. 

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