Chiropractors have been treating millions of people worldwide for their lingering back pain, neck pain, and headaches. But it wasn’t until the recent age of social media that the popularity of chiropractors skyrocketed. Videos of chiropractors cracking necks and spines have surfaced online, and more chiropractic myths came with all that added buzz. Seeing these videos of chiropractors looking like they’re about to break someone’s neck often leads people to type on their search bars and ask, “Are chiropractors dangerous?” – but lo and behold, the answer is “No.” Chiropractic care is one of the best things you can do for your spine health, and we’re here to debunk all the common myths about chiropractors so you won’t feel scared to see one.
Setting the Record Straight on Chiropractic
Myth # 1: Chiropractors Are Not Real Doctors
Although this chiropractic myth is outdated, some people still think that chiropractors are not real doctors. While it is true that they aren’t medical doctors, they are, however, doctors of chiropractic degrees. Chiropractors attend a four-year doctoral graduate school where they learn to treat bone, nerve, muscle, and ligament disorders. After graduating, they must pass a board exam and earn a license just like any other medical doctor. Chiropractors must also continue to study, learn, and train to keep their licenses updated. And if you still don’t believe us, please check the federal law and Department of Health and Human Services, where you can see that chiropractors are recognized as doctors.
Myth # 2: Chiropractors Are Not Trusted by the Medical Community
There was a time not so long ago that medical doctors didn’t quite understand what chiropractors do. Still, it all changed after a major lawsuit in the 1980s where the Supreme Court of Illinois found that the American Medical Association was guilty of slander and conspiracy against chiropractic. The medical community has now agreed that movement is a type of medicine and that chiropractors know what’s best for musculoskeletal conditions such as neck and back pain. Hospitals are now working hand-in-hand with chiropractors, and medical doctors happily recommend their patients to a chiropractor or vice versa if needed.
Myth # 3: Chiropractic is All About Back Pain
While it is true that most people see chiropractors for back pain, chiropractic care enhances the overall health and wellness of a person. Spinal adjustments influence the nervous system (including the brain, spinal cord, and nerves), which are crucial to keeping the body functioning properly. Other than back and neck pain, chiropractic care can also treat the following:
- Muscle pain
- Carpal Tunnel
- High blood pressure
- Pregnancy-related discomfort
Myth # 4: Chiropractic Adjustments are Painful
Chiropractic adjustments may look painful because of all the cracking and popping noises, but the truth is, these sounds are no different than the sound you hear when you crack your knuckles. The sounds are the result of gas bubbles releasing from your joints. And don’t worry! Once you hear that crack or pop, you’re guaranteed to be feeling rejuvenated and relieved.
Myth # 5: Chiropractic Causes Strokes
Because people associate strokes with the nervous system, some believe that chiropractors can cause a stroke. However, 2016 research proved that there is no link between stroke and neck or back adjustments. You might have heard of a few accounts of people suffering a stroke following spine manipulation. Still, in most cases, those patients already suffer from an injury that’s likely to result in stroke, and they sought out chiropractic care due to the pain from their injury. Further movement could understandably make an existing dissection worse. That’s why in the case of a painful injury, it’s best to seek out medical advice first from the hospital before pursuing chiropractic care.
Myth # 6: Chiropractic Always Requires X-Rays
The need for x-rays before seeking chiropractic care is quite a debatable topic. However, musculoskeletal conditions that are simple mechanical dysfunctions and not detected by x-rays are often easily fixed by using manipulative or mobilization treatments. Therefore, it is usually suggested to start with a trial of chiropractic care, and if nothing improves, x-rays should be done. However, spinal x-rays are often categorized as a standard of care during an initial chiropractic evaluation.
And at last, now that you are armed with the facts of chiropractic care, nothing is holding you back from getting the pain relief you need and deserve. So let’s get popping!
At the Bergen Chiropractic and Sports Rehabilitation Center, our chiropractic team, led by Dr. Gregory Doerr, follows the highest and most professional medical standards to provide superior chiropractic help. After all, our mission is to provide unparalleled patient care and services in a comfortable healing atmosphere. Contact us to learn more about our chiropractic services!
- Frank M. Painter, D.C. The Chiropractic Antitrust Suit Wilk, et al vs. the AMA, et al. 1998 May 12. Chiro.org. <https://chiro.org/Wilk/>
- R Valente , H Gibson. Chiropractic manipulation in carpal tunnel syndrome. 1994 May, J Manipulative Physiol Ther., 17(4):246-9.
- Todd AJ, Carroll MT, Robinson A, Mitchell EK. Adverse events due to chiropractic and other manual therapies for infants and children: A review of the literature. J Manipulative Physiol Ther. 2014 Oct 30. pii: S0161-4754(14)00178-X. doi: 10.1016/j. jmpt.2014.09.008. [Epub ahead of print]
- Ephraim W Church, Emily P Sieg, Omar Zalatimo, Namath S Hussain, Michael Glantz, Robert E Harbaugh. Systematic Review and Meta-analysis of Chiropractic Care and Cervical Artery Dissection: No Evidence for Causation. 2016 Feb. 8(2): e498. doi: 10.7759/cureus.498