Does a Chiropractic Adjustment Hurt?

If you have never been to a chiropractor, you may wonder if a chiropractic adjustment hurts. This is a very common question, especially for first-time chiropractic patients. Just like anything unfamiliar, going into the chiropractor may have you feeling nervous if it is your first visit. Media depictions can inspire a fear of chiropractic care, and sounds of popping may feel unfamiliar and cause alarm. 

While we understand the uncertainty, you do not have to be afraid of your chiropractic adjustment. Chiropractic care is a natural method to restore the body’s ability to heal itself, and Dr. Casselman has years of experience helping people feel better through chiropractic adjustment.

What Is a Chiropractic Adjustment?

A chiropractic adjustment is a method of spinal manipulation. A chiropractor applies a sudden, controlled force to a spinal joint. This can be done by hand or with the assistance of specific chiropractic tools that measure pressure. The goal of a chiropractic adjustment is generally to realign the spine. 

What to Expect

chiropractic adjustment

When you come in for a chiropractic appointment, you will be led into a private exam room. Dr. Casselman will ask about the reason for your visit and address your concerns and questions. He will conduct an evaluation before any treatment to make sure you get what you need without exacerbating pre-existing problems. This is likely to include talking with you about your pain, looking into your medical history, and gentle mobility tests. Such thoroughness will make sure you get a chiropractic adjustment that is tailored to you.

After assessing your condition, Dr. Casselman will have you sit or lay on the bench depending on where you are experiencing pain. He will tell you where to put your arms, either to your sides or crossed in front of your chest, and if you need to turn your neck or hips. The adjustment may target different areas, so be prepared to shift as directed. Wearing comfortable clothes will help mobility.

If performed by an experienced professional, chiropractic adjustment shouldn’t hurt. As the chiropractor applies precise and directed force to the joints, you should not experience any pain. For best results, try to relax during the process so that your bones and muscles can align as they ought.

Why the Pops 

As your chiropractor applies adjusting force, you may hear a popping sound. This is completely normal and not a cause for worry. As the vertebrae (the bones of your spine) adjust into their proper place, tiny pockets of gas between the joints are released, accompanied by the same sound you hear when “popping” your knuckles. It is not dangerous. If you don’t hear a sound, that’s not a problem either. The sound is not an indication either way that the adjustment was performed correctly.

A Chiropractic Adjustment will Leave You Feeling Revived

Chiropractic treatment is a natural and non-invasive way to feel rejuvenated. Adjustments relieve unhealthy pressure on spinal joints and nerves, restoring proper communication within the body’s systems and correcting restricted blood flow. 

chiropractic adjustment

Can an Adjustment Make You Feel Worse?

Some people do experience soreness—like they haven’t worked out in a while—after initial chiropractic adjustments. This is the natural result of the body adjusting to the correct position of muscles and bones, no longer unduly weighed down by gravity or seized up by stress. This soreness will ebb with movement and icing and regular adjustment.

Though uncommon, some people experience illness or digestive changes after early chiropractic adjustments. This is the natural result of jumpstarting the immune and digestive systems. The key is to remember that a chiropractic adjustment is designed to restore the body’s alignment. Sometimes that means that other systems have to readjust. With consistent care, both inside and outside of the chiropractor’s office, a new healthier normal can be attained, and less-than-stellar side effects of adjustments will fade. The bottom line is that the goal of chiropractic is to align your body optimally so it is better equipped to maintain its own health. 

Minimize Side Effects

You can minimize the risk of feeling unwell after a chiropractic adjustment by drinking plenty of water before and after. This helps the body to flush out toxins, and it lubricates your muscles and joints. We also recommend giving your body plenty of time to perform necessary repairs through quality sleep. After a chiropractic adjustment, the body is geared to devote energy to healing. Let it do its thing, and use this opportunity to take a rejuvenating nap.

You are far more likely to experience pain caused by spinal misalignment than by the adjustment to correct that misalignment. Our goal at Pinnacle Chiropractic is to alleviate pain and help you feel reassured that your chiropractic adjustment won’t hurt. Come and see us for relief today.