A licensed health care professional who treats neuromuscular disorders through manual adjustment and manipulation of the spine.


A chiropractor is a health care professional who specializes in the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of neuromuscular disorders, with an emphasis on manual adjustment and manipulation of the spine. Chiropractors focus on the relationship between the body's structure, particularly the spine, and its functioning. They believe that proper alignment of the musculoskeletal system, especially the spine, enables the body to heal itself without surgery or medication.

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Chiropractic care was founded in 1895 by Daniel David Palmer, who performed the first chiropractic adjustment on a partially deaf janitor. Palmer believed that manual manipulation of the spine could cure many diseases. Throughout the 20th century, chiropractic care gained recognition and acceptance. In 1987, the American Medical Association lost an antitrust case against chiropractors, leading to greater acceptance and integration of chiropractic care into mainstream healthcare. Today, chiropractic is the third largest primary health care profession, after medicine and dentistry, in the United States.


  1. Pain Relief Chiropractic adjustments can effectively reduce pain in the back, neck, joints, and muscles.
  2. Improved Mobility By properly aligning the spine and reducing inflammation, chiropractic care can enhance joint mobility and flexibility.
  3. Headache Relief Chiropractic treatments, including spinal manipulation, can help alleviate tension headaches and migraines.
  4. Enhanced Athletic Performance Regular chiropractic care can optimize body functioning, leading to better athletic performance and reduced risk of injuries.
  5. Improved Posture Chiropractic adjustments can help correct poor posture, reducing strain on the spine and promoting better overall health.
  6. Complementary to Other Treatments Chiropractic care can be used in conjunction with other medical treatments, physical therapy, and lifestyle changes for a comprehensive approach to health.
  7. Non-Invasive and Drug-Free Chiropractic care offers a natural, non-invasive approach to healthcare without the use of surgery or medications.

How It Works

Chiropractic care focuses on the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of neuromuscular disorders, with an emphasis on manual adjustments and manipulations of the spine. Chiropractors believe that proper alignment of the body's musculoskeletal structure, particularly the spine, enables the body to heal itself without surgery or medication. During a chiropractic adjustment, the practitioner applies controlled force to a joint, moving it beyond its usual range of motion. This action aims to reduce pain, improve joint function, and promote overall well-being by restoring proper alignment and alleviating pressure on nerves.


While chiropractic care is generally considered safe when performed by a trained and licensed practitioner, some individuals may experience temporary side effects such as soreness, stiffness, or slight pain following an adjustment. It is essential to inform your chiropractor about any pre-existing medical conditions, as certain adjustments may not be suitable for everyone. Pregnant women, individuals with osteoporosis, or those with a history of spinal surgery should consult their primary care physician before seeking chiropractic treatment. Additionally, it is crucial to choose a reputable and experienced chiropractor to minimize the risk of complications.

How Much It Costs

The cost of chiropractic care can vary depending on factors such as the practitioner's experience, location, and the specific treatment plan required. On average, an initial consultation and examination may cost between $60 to $200, while subsequent adjustments typically range from $30 to $100 per session. Some insurance plans may cover a portion of chiropractic care costs, but coverage varies widely. Patients without insurance can expect to pay anywhere from $500 to $2,000 or more for a complete treatment plan, depending on the duration and frequency of visits required.

Virtual & Online Options

While virtual or online chiropractic consultations are becoming increasingly popular, they have limitations compared to in-person visits. Online consultations can be useful for initial assessments, providing guidance on stretches, exercises, and lifestyle modifications. However, the hands-on nature of chiropractic adjustments makes it challenging to replicate the full benefits of in-person treatment through virtual means. Seeking a "chiropractor near me" allows for a more comprehensive evaluation, precise manual adjustments, and the use of specialized equipment when necessary. In-person visits also enable the practitioner to better assess the patient's response to treatment and make real-time adjustments as needed.


To practice as a chiropractor in the United States, individuals must earn a Doctor of Chiropractic (D.C.) degree from an accredited chiropractic college. The educational program typically takes four years to complete and includes classroom study, laboratory work, and clinical experience. Upon completion of the degree, aspiring chiropractors must pass a national board examination and obtain a state license to practice. Some chiropractors may choose to pursue additional certifications in specialized areas such as sports chiropractic, pediatric chiropractic, or acupuncture. Maintaining licensure requires ongoing continuing education to stay current with the latest research and techniques in the field.

Complementary Practices

Complementary practices that work well with chiropractic care include massage therapy, physical therapy, acupuncture, yoga, and exercise. Incorporating these practices alongside chiropractic adjustments can enhance the overall effectiveness of treatment, promote faster healing, and improve overall well-being. Massage therapy helps relax tense muscles, while physical therapy strengthens and stabilizes the body. Acupuncture can relieve pain and promote balance, and yoga and exercise improve flexibility, strength, and body awareness.

Practitioner Types

Chiropractors are the primary practitioners who provide chiropractic care. They are licensed healthcare professionals who specialize in the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of neuromuscular disorders, with an emphasis on manual adjustments to the spine. Some chiropractors may also have additional certifications in sports chiropractic, pediatric chiropractic, or other specialized areas. Other practitioners who may work closely with chiropractors include massage therapists, physical therapists, acupuncturists, and primary care physicians.

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  • Q: What conditions can chiropractic care help with?

    • A: Chiropractic care can help with a wide range of conditions, including back pain, neck pain, headaches, sciatica, sports injuries, and repetitive strain injuries. It can also help improve overall body function and promote general well-being.
  • Q: Is chiropractic care safe?

    • A: When performed by a licensed and trained chiropractor, chiropractic care is generally considered safe. However, as with any medical treatment, there are some risks involved. It's important to discuss your medical history and any concerns with your chiropractor before beginning treatment.
  • Q: How often should I see a chiropractor?

    • A: The frequency of chiropractic visits depends on your individual needs and condition. Some people may benefit from weekly or bi-weekly visits, while others may only need occasional adjustments. Your chiropractor will develop a personalized treatment plan based on your specific requirements.
  • Q: Do I need a referral to see a chiropractor?

    • A: In most cases, you do not need a referral to see a chiropractor. However, some insurance plans may require a referral from a primary care physician for coverage. It's best to check with your insurance provider to understand your specific plan's requirements.
  • Q: What should I expect during my first chiropractic visit?

    • A: During your first chiropractic visit, the chiropractor will typically take a detailed health history, perform a physical examination, and may order diagnostic tests, such as X-rays, if necessary. They will then discuss your diagnosis and develop a personalized treatment plan, which may include manual adjustments, exercises, and lifestyle recommendations.


Chiropractic care is a holistic approach to healthcare that focuses on the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of neuromuscular disorders, with an emphasis on manual adjustments to the spine. By working with licensed chiropractors and incorporating complementary practices such as massage therapy, physical therapy, and exercise, individuals can experience relief from pain, improved body function, and enhanced overall well-being. As with any healthcare decision, it's essential to discuss your specific needs and concerns with a qualified practitioner to determine if chiropractic care is right for you. With the growing recognition of the benefits of chiropractic care, more and more people are turning to this natural, drug-free approach to optimize their health and quality of life.