Many of our new patients call us asking what is the difference between visiting a chiropractor and visiting a traditional medical doctor or family doctor. To be able to explain the differences in treatment methods, we recommend scheduling an appointment with our clinic so that we can go over any specific conditions that a patient is struggling with. In general, however, it is important to understand that there is a difference in how a family doctor and a chiropractor approach medical care.
A family doctor will typically conduct an examination and speak with patients about their symptoms. Even when conducting a physical exam, they are typically looking for key indicators of a problem. For example, a fever and sore throat could be symptoms indicating strep throat. This is a very basic example, but regardless of whether someone is having issues with fatigue, fever, soreness, etc. a traditional doctor is going to look for symptoms that can be used to indicate what the problem could be. If someone has symptoms that fit into a specific condition, it will then be easy for a doctor to treat it by prescribing various medications. In some cases, they may recommend surgery or physical therapy but, typically, they will start with pharmaceuticals.
TREATING THE CAUSE OF THE PROBLEM
As a chiropractor, we do not focus on treating symptoms. Instead, we want to know what is causing the problem in the first place. For example, if one of our patients is suffering from pain when they walk, we do not want to prescribe muscle relaxers or pain medication. Instead, we want to know why they have pain when walking and work to correct that problem once it has been identified. Instead of being symptom oriented, we consider ourselves to be solution oriented.
Therefore, we do not tend to prescribe medications. Instead, we use touch therapy, physical therapy and massage to help bring the body back into alignment, reduce pain and inflammation and strengthen the body. This approach is incredibly effective for solving the problem and helping our patients to experience an actual recovery.
TYPES OF RECOVERY
Our goal is to help our patients reach a full recovery whenever possible. Very often we can do this by bringing the body into alignment. From a patient’s perspective it is important to consider that there are several types of recovery. There is the recovery that says the condition is managed and pain is tolerable but requires constant medication or there is a full recovery where medication is not necessary to live a comfortable and full life. We do our best to help our patients have the latter because we believe this is what will produce a high quality of life.
As a chiropractor, we recommend our treatment solutions as a way for patients to improve their health over the long term. Keeping that in mind, we also understand that it is sometimes necessary to work in tandem with other physicians to produce the best possible results. Any patient that wants to continue seeing their family doctor for a problem while also visiting us is more than welcome to do so. In fact, in some situations we encourage it. Our goal is to help our patients live a full life that is free from pain, discomfort and full mobility. If that requires a combination approach to patient care, we are happy to participate in the process.
If you want to learn more about visiting a chiropractor or find out what our services entail, call our clinic and schedule an appointment. We will be happy to speak with you, answer questions and help you to live a full life.