Woman being treated by a chiropractor

Using Chiropractic Care for Pain

Back pain is an issue that plagues many individuals worldwide. It affects people of all ages and backgrounds, making it a widespread problem that many seek relief from. 


One alternative to medication and surgery is chiropractic care, a holistic approach focusing on the musculoskeletal system. 


Spinal adjustments for back pain is a common chiropractic treatment that has proven effective for many. This blog post aims to unlock the potential of chiropractic care for back pain and more.

What is chiropractic care?

Chiropractic care is a specialized field in healthcare that concentrates on the diagnosis, treatment, and management of disorders affecting the nervous and musculoskeletal systems. Unlike conventional medicine, which often relies on medication and surgery, chiropractic care adopts a holistic, non-invasive approach. 


Central to this practice is the belief that the body has an innate ability to heal itself, given the right conditions. The chiropractor’s role is thus to create an optimal environment for this self-healing to occur, primarily by performing spinal adjustments.


The spine is viewed as the highway of the nervous system, and misalignments, often referred to as “subluxations,” can disrupt the communication between the brain and the rest of the body. These disruptions may manifest in various ways, including pain, reduced mobility, and even systemic issues like digestive problems or weakened immunity. 


Chiropractic care aims to correct these subluxations through spinal adjustments, thereby restoring the flow of nerve signals and promoting overall well-being. Spinal adjustments for back pain are typically performed manually, where the chiropractor uses their hands to apply controlled force to misaligned vertebrae. 


These adjustments are often accompanied by a “cracking” sound, which is the release of gas bubbles trapped in the joint spaces. Many patients report immediate relief from symptoms following an adjustment, although it may take multiple sessions for lasting results.


Chiropractors may also incorporate other treatments and modalities into their practice to augment spinal adjustments. This can include physiotherapy, nutritional advice, exercise regimes, and even acupuncture. These adjunctive therapies can help manage pain, improve range of motion, and accelerate the healing process.


It’s important to note that while chiropractic care has proven effective for many people suffering from back pain, headaches, and other musculoskeletal issues, it is not a cure-all. Patients with certain conditions, such as severe osteoporosis, spinal cord injuries, or certain types of infections, may not be suitable candidates for chiropractic treatment. 


Therefore, it is essential to consult a healthcare provider for an accurate diagnosis and to determine if chiropractic care is appropriate for your condition.

Chiropractor treating a young man with neck pain

Benefits of chiropractic care

Chiropractic care offers a unique approach to health and wellness that stands apart from traditional medical treatments in several key ways:

Non-invasive Treatment

One of the most significant advantages of chiropractic care is its non-invasive nature. Unlike surgical procedures, which can be risky and require lengthy recovery periods, chiropractic adjustments are generally considered safe and require no downtime.

Additionally, chiropractic care avoids the use of pharmaceutical medications, which can come with a host of side effects and the potential for dependency. This is especially advantageous for those who prefer a natural route to healing or for those who may be contraindicated for certain medications due to other medical conditions.

Holistic Approach

Chiropractors adopt a holistic philosophy when treating patients, considering the body as an interconnected system. This perspective allows them to address the root causes of pain and discomfort, rather than merely alleviating symptoms.

For instance, if a patient presents with lower back pain, a chiropractor may examine other contributing factors like posture, diet, and emotional stress.

By taking into account the totality of a person’s well-being, chiropractic care often results in more enduring solutions to health problems, in contrast to treatments that only focus on symptom relief.

Improved Functionality and Mobility

Through spinal adjustments and other manipulative therapies, chiropractic care helps to improve the body’s alignment, facilitating better movement and functionality.

This is particularly beneficial for people who suffer from chronic pain or have mobility issues. Proper alignment can improve overall body mechanics, reducing wear and tear on joints and muscles.

Enhanced Quality of Life

Beyond specific health concerns, regular chiropractic care can enhance one’s quality of life by improving sleep quality, increasing energy levels, and reducing stress.

Many patients report a general sense of well-being after undergoing chiropractic adjustments, which can have a positive impact on mental health.

Preventive Care

Chiropractic care is not just for treating existing conditions; it can also serve as a form of preventive care. Regular adjustments can help maintain spinal health, making it easier for the body to fight off infections and illnesses naturally.

In summary, chiropractic care offers a comprehensive, non-invasive, and natural path to healing, making it an attractive option for those who seek a holistic approach to their health and wellness.
Woman holding her wrist joint in pain

Types of pain chiropractic can help with

Chiropractors treat a variety of conditions, including but not limited to:

  • Back Pain
  • Neck Pain
  • Shoulder Pain
  • Joint Pain
  • Poor Posture
  • Headaches

Spinal adjustments for back pain can be particularly beneficial as they help to realign the vertebrae that may have moved out of place due to daily activities, trauma, or other reasons.

Do chiropractors really help with back pain?

Numerous studies have confirmed the effectiveness of chiropractic care in treating back pain. 


One study found that patients with chronic low-back pain treated by chiropractors showed greater improvement and satisfaction after one month of treatment compared to patients treated by family physicians.

What will a chiropractor do for lower back pain?

A chiropractor will often use spinal adjustments to treat lower back pain. An adjustment is a pressure from the chiropractor utilizing the hands or an instrument to move a vertebrae back into place.

This happens with a quick movement and is often without discomfort. You may hear a noise that sounds like you’re cracking your knuckles, referred to as joint cavitation. It is the release of gases such as oxygen and nitrogen from the joint.

Spinal adjustments for back pain are excellent ways to keep the body functioning at its highest level. When the body is in alignment, it can respond and perform as it was designed to.
Man on stretcher being treated by a chiropractor

Potential disadvantages of chiropractic therapy

While chiropractic care is generally considered safe, there can be some potential disadvantages:

  • Soreness: After an adjustment, some people may experience soreness in the treated part of the body. This is usually temporary and resolves within a day or two.
  • Risk of Injury: There is a small risk of injury from spinal adjustments, such as a herniated disk or a worsening of an existing condition.

    However, the risk is minimal and much lower compared to other treatments like surgery.

Why does my back hurt worse after a chiropractor?

Some people may experience increased pain after an adjustment. This is usually because the body is adjusting to the new alignment.

Muscles that were previously out of balance may be used differently after an adjustment, leading to temporary discomfort.

This is usually a good sign and indicates the body is healing. However, if the pain persists or worsens, it is essential to consult your chiropractor or another healthcare provider.

How long does it take for a chiropractor to fix back pain?

The timeline for experiencing relief from back pain through chiropractic care is highly variable and dependent on a range of factors, including the severity of the condition, the underlying cause, and the patient’s overall health.

Additionally, each chiropractor may have a different approach and methodology, which can also influence the rate of success.

Immediate Relief:

For some patients, immediate relief or a significant reduction in pain can occur right after the first chiropractic adjustment.

This is especially likely in cases where the pain is acute and caused by muscle tension or minor misalignments that are easily corrected.

However, it’s important to note that immediate relief doesn’t mean that the underlying issue has been fully resolved. Ongoing care is typically recommended to maintain benefits and prevent recurrence.

Short-term Care:

In other instances, a series of sessions may be needed over a few weeks to make a significant impact. Short-term chiropractic care plans are designed to treat the immediate issue but might also begin to address some of the underlying factors contributing to back pain.

These plans usually include multiple adjustments, lifestyle recommendations, and possibly other therapies like massage or physical therapy to complement the chiropractic adjustments.

Long-term Care:

For chronic back pain or more complicated issues, such as herniated discs or degenerative conditions, a long-term care plan may be advised. In these cases, it might take several months of regular chiropractic visits, along with a coordinated care plan that may involve other healthcare professionals like physiotherapists or medical doctors, to see substantial improvement.

Lifestyle Changes:

Regardless of the time frame, most chiropractors will advocate for lifestyle changes that support spinal health. This could include exercises to strengthen the back and core muscles, ergonomic adjustments at work, dietary changes, and stress management techniques.

These complementary activities are essential for long-term relief and prevention.

Compliance and Patient Responsibility:

It’s worth mentioning that the efficacy of any treatment plan, short-term or long-term, also hinges on the patient’s compliance. Following the chiropractor’s recommendations, attending all scheduled sessions, and adhering to at-home care plans can significantly impact the speed and extent of recovery.

While some people experience quick relief from back pain through chiropractic care, others require a more extended, multifaceted approach.

The key is to work closely with your chiropractor to develop a personalized treatment plan tailored to your specific needs, and to be committed to the recommended course of treatment for best results.  

More than one way to heal

There are various techniques that chiropractors may use for spinal adjustments. Some techniques involve delivering a highly specific and accurate hands-on thrust, while others may use an instrument that delivers a light thrust. There are techniques that focus on one region, while others work on them all.

A natural pain killer

Spinal adjustments for back pain are used to put your body back to its natural state. Because chiropractors work with bones protecting your spinal cords and nerves, they are highly skilled. Most patients feel relief following their first adjustment and continuously improve with care.

For you and everyone you know

Chiropractic care is safe and beneficial for people of all ages, from the elderly to teenagers, newborns, and pregnant women. Even people who have had back, neck, or hip surgery can be safely adjusted.

Chiropractors evaluate every individual and treat them with care specific to their needs. You are more than just a number on a chart at your chiropractor’s office.

In conclusion

Chiropractic care, including spinal adjustments for back pain, can be a powerful tool in managing pain and other health issues. While there are potential disadvantages, the benefits often outweigh the risks for many individuals. 


It is crucial to maintain an ongoing care plan and make necessary lifestyle changes to support your chiropractic care for long-term relief.

If you have questions about how chiropractic care can help you, schedule a consultation today to start your path to a healthier you.