What chiropractic is
Chiropractic is a health profession concerned with the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of mechanical disorders of the musculoskeletal system (bones, joints and muscles), and the effects of these disorders on the function of the nervous system and general health. There is an emphasis on manual treatments including spinal adjustment and other joint and soft-tissue manipulation.
Chiropractors have a specialist interest in neck and back pain but when they assess their patient they take their entire physical, emotional and social wellbeing into account.
Chiropractors use a range of techniques to reduce pain, improve function and increase mobility, with an emphasis on hands-on manipulation of the spine.
They may also offer advice on diet, exercise and lifestyle, and rehabilitation programmes that involve exercises to do in your own time. Some chiropractors may also offer other treatments, such as acupuncture.
Who and what do chiropractors treat?
Chiropractors’ patients include the young, older people, manual workers, office professionals, pregnant women, children and sports people. Patients seek treatment for a wide variety of conditions, including back pain, neck pain, joint pains, headaches caused by neck problems, and prevention of migraine and conditions arising from sports injury.
There are many different approaches and techniques used by chiropractors, because of this the treatment approach taken by one chiropractor might be significantly different from that of another. However, all chiropractors will need to take a patient history and receive your informed consent before treatment.
Most patients visit a chiropractor of their own accord, but some may be referred by a doctor. Chiropractors are trained to recognise when chiropractic will not help a medical condition, and will refer a patient to a GP when necessary.
Regulation of chiropractic
All chiropractors in the UK are regulated by the General Chiropractic Council (GCC).