PHASES OF CARE
What type of Chiropractic Care is best for me?
Most patients start going to a chiropractor to get pain relief for conditions such as neck pain, back pain or headaches.
Once your chiropractor has found the cause of your problems if applicable they will give you the option of two distinct treatment approaches to choose from:
1. Crisis Care:this is where the aim is just to give short term pain relief. With this type of care the patient usually returns to the chiropractor only when they are experiencing spinal pain again.
2. Preventative Care:this is where the aim is to provide pain relief, restore spinal function and strengthen the spine. Chiropractors believe that this type of care has the potential to slow degeneration in the spine and help to prevent problems in the future.
We understand that everyone’s needs are unique and indeed can change over time. That is why we discuss with you these different approaches to care and help you choose which is best for you with your current circumstances. We will support you in whatever type of care you decide is best suited to you.
Why did my symptoms start all of a sudden?
When you experience symptoms such as back pain or headaches the pain can be almost instantaneous. Unfortunately the underlying cause that set off these symptoms has in some cases often been present for weeks, months or even years before the pain started.
Many people think that if they don’t feel any pain it means nothing is wrong with their spine. Unfortunately, pain is a very poor indicator of how well your spine is working. It can be similar to having a tooth cavity or suffering from heart disease, the symptoms appear long after the problem started.
What are the phases of preventative care?
There are three distinct phases of preventative care
- Initial intensive care
- Corrective Care
- Maintenance Care
What happens in initial intensive care?
In this phase our main aim is to:
- Quickly and effectively reduce pain
- Reduce swelling
- Improve movement
- Reduce muscle spasm
During this phase we ask you to “take it easy”, however staying active is very important. Often some increased rest can help and we will advise you on what you can do to speed up your recovery. This may include exercises the use of ice/heat packs or lifestyle changes.
Clinically we find that some patients get relief almost immediately however other patients have more of a gradual improvement over days and weeks. The number of times you will see us in this phase is totally dependent upon your specific condition and is different for every patient.
We want you back living your normal life as soon as possible.
What happens in Corrective Care?
The aims of this phase of care is to correct your underlying problems by:
- Correct any underlying injury
- Strengthen the muscles
- Restore good spinal function.
This corrective phase will usually take anywhere from 1 to 3 months. In some chronic cases the rehabilitation phase may even take up to 6 months. It is important to remember that the underlying causes of your symptoms could have developed over a long time and can sometimes take time to correct.
Chiropractic visits in this phase are usually weekly or fortnightly depending on the severity of your injury or condition but will vary for each patient. Every patient responds differently to their treatment.
You can accelerate your healing process by doing rehabilitative exercises and make postural and lifestyle improvements.
In some cases patients may experience mild flare-ups of their symptoms during this process. This happens because your body can be prone to aggravation when it has not fully strengthened and recovered. This is normal.
What happens in Maintenance Care
The aim of this type of care is to:
- Maintain good spinal function and health
- Allow you to enjoy a very active lifestyle
- Engage in more of the activities you love.
- Slow any degeneration in your spine
- Minimise future spinal injuries
At this point in time there is some scientific evidence suggesting that ongoing spinal treatment aimed at maintaining good spinal function is successful in terms of health promotion however more research is needed to prove exactly what these benefits are in both the short and long term.
Clinically we find that many patients report a greater sense of general wellbeing and more energy when they receive regular chiropractic adjustments.
Chiropractors believe that combining an exercise program, maintain a proper diet and have a healthy lifestyle with your chiropractic care will help you get get the best health care results.
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Who chooses to have Maintenance care?
There are two very distinct groups of patients that ongoing maintenance care may help:
- Patients with a permanent injury or chronic condition that can’t be corrected such as disc injuries or arthritis. For these patients our treatment goals are:
- Keeping pain to a minimum
- Stabilising injured or weakened areas
- Keeping you as active as possible
- Reducing your need for medications
- Minimising exacerbation frequency or duration
- Slow or prevent further degeneration of the spine
- Patients who want to be as health as possible and choose to have regular chiropractic care as part of their health care strategy. For these patients our treatment goals are:
- Preventing future episodes of spinal pain
- Preventing spinal degeneration
- Being as healthy as possible into the future.
Chiropractors have long believed that ongoing chiropractic care will improve health outcomes in the future however there is currently little scientific evidence to support this concept. Some patients will choose to have ongoing care for health promotion, as is their right, however it is important that they understand that at this time the care is based on a philosophical belief and not on scientific evidence.
Those patients who choose to have a preventative chiropractic care program will be given a program of care that is designed specifically for them allowing for factors such as their age, general health, your lifestyle and any pre-existing health conditions. Their frequency of care can be raging from monthly to once or twice a year dependent on their individual needs.
Stiffness, low back pain or sciatica can be treated by
chiropractic care. Make an appointment today
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