What To Expect From Your First Chiropractic Appointment


Chiropractic therapy is a traditional and non-invasive form of physical therapy focused on the musculoskeletal system. Patients can feel hesitant to schedule initial appointments because they are unsure of the process. Thankfully, there is nothing to worry about. A chiropractic adjustment from an experienced chiropractor may bring you relief and a greater sense of wellbeing.

Consultation and Patient History

Your initial appointment with the chiropractor is nothing to get anxious about. While some appointments might result in your first adjustment, many will not. A doctor of chiropractic will first want to develop an understanding of your reasoning for scheduling the visit.

While most people schedule an appointment with a chiropractor because of back or neck pain, those symptoms do not encompass all clients, nor are they specific enough to determine a treatment plan. A chiropractor will want to discuss your pain and pain zone; for example, if you have minor back pain, where does the pain seem to emanate from?

The doctor of chiropractic will also want to discuss your history, especially about any former injuries that might still be affecting your musculoskeletal system. Pinpointing potential areas of interest are paramount to determining further testing and treatment plans.

Potential Tests and Initial Mobility or Flexibility Exam

If you are visiting with a chiropractor shortly after an accident or injury, they will typically request imaging to determine the severity of the damage. If you have a broken bone or fracture, the chiropractor is likely to refer you to the emergency room. However, if you have a sprain or other minor problem, the doctor of chiropractic might offer a treatment plan.

Before diving into a treatment plan, the chiropractor will ensure that your injuries fall within their purview. No licensed chiropractor will risk a patient’s health and well-being.

Additionally, a chiropractor will probably perform a mobility or flexibility exam to determine the patient’s range of motion. They will want to work towards improving flexibility, but they will only do so incrementally, protecting the patient from further injury.

Treatment Plan and Spinal Manipulations or Adjustments

While the doctor of chiropractic might discuss a treatment plan with a patient at the initial appointment, there is no guarantee that a spinal manipulation or adjustment will be performed during the same visit. The chiropractor will determine the value or immediacy of an adjustment.

Most patients will receive treatment plans with a projection of six weeks. However, a chiropractor might reassess during treatment and determine more visits or frequency of treatments is necessary. Contact a chiropractor in your area if you are struggling with chronic pain or an injury.