What’s the first thing that comes into your mind when someone says the word “Chiropractic”? Some of you will say “relief”, some will say “adjustments”, and others may respond with something less complimentary.
Chiropractic has had its detractors over the years. Chiropractic evolved separately and apart from “traditional medicine”, a fact which contributed to its “alternative status”. Many years ago, scope of practice (what chiropractors are allowed to do) and educational requirements used to vary widely from state to state. Although there is still some variation, the education, training and practice of chiropractors is highly regulated and standardized today. Today’s doctor of chiropractic must pass national board exams and also state board exams before he or she can practice. A common myth about chiropractors is that “chiropractors only have to go to school for a few years.” In fact, today’s graduates have at least 8 years of college (a 4 year degree and then 4 years of chiropractic college). Chiropractors must complete several hours of continuing education every year in order to remain licensed and many doctors of chiropractic choose to gain advanced training in specific techniques.
There are still many misconceptions about chiropractors. For instance, another myth states that “chiropractors don’t believe in medicine and think that chiropractic cures everything.” In fact, the chiropractic curriculum and the chiropractic licensing laws teach and mandate referrals for the good of the patient when the circumstance requires. Most chiropractors work within their health care communities and quite regularly refer to (and get referrals from) other health care professionals.
Maybe you have heard this myth, “chiropractors have to crack and pop your spine”. Truth: in today’s world that type of treatment is not necessary in order to treat the patient. New, non-force and low force techniques make it possible to obtain safe and gentle chiropractic care, without any cracking, popping or roughness. The patient can be effectively treated and stay totally comfortable during the treatment.
Want to know more? The American Chiropractic Association has more information about chiropractic education and the chiropractic profession.
The American Chiropractic Association: Chiropractic Education http://www.acatoday.org/level3_css.cfm?T1ID=13&T2ID=61&T3ID=151
Dr. Gregory K. Alexander is a 1987 Cum Laude graduate of Western States Chiropractic College. He is trained in PulStar adjusting and analysis and is an Activator Technique Advance Proficiency Doctor. Alexander Chiropractic is located in Spring, Texas, north of Houston.