Can anyone call themselves a chiropractor?
No. It is illegal for anyone in the UK to use the title ‘chiropractor’ or to imply that they are a chiropractor unless they are registered with the General Chiropractic Council (GCC).By law, the GCC check those who apply for registration to make sure that they have a chiropractic qualification, are of good character and are physically and mentally fit.
They also set and monitor standards of education and training, set standards of practice and conduct and deal with any complaints about the conduct or practice of chiropractors.
Do I have to have an x-ray?
Your chiropractor will only recommend that an x-ray be taken if there is a valid clinical reason for doing so. Like all health professionals, chiropractors must comply with the legislation that governs the use of x-rays – the Ionising Radiation (Medical Exposure) Regulations 2000.
What is Chiropractic Treatment?
Chiropractors are concerned with the framework of bones and muscles that support the body (the ‘musculoskeletal system’). Some problems of the musculoskeletal system can be caused by accidents, stress, lack of exercise, poor posture, illness and everyday wear and tear. These problems may cause pressure on the nerves in the body.
Depending on your condition, the chiropractor may manipulate parts of your spine or joints and give you advice on exercise, self-help, diet and lifestyle. Some chiropractors also offer rehabilitation programmes.
Manipulation involves precisely handling or moving joints, or parts of the spine, sometimes moving them further than they would normally move.
Will the Treatment Hurt?
Chiropractic treatment is usually painless unless an area is inflamed (swollen). If this is the case your chiropractor will alter the treatment. Don’t worry if you hear a clicking or popping noise when one of your joints is being manipulated – this is perfectly normal with this form of treatment.
Some patients have mild reaction such as temporary aches and pains after their spine or joints have been manipulated or after exercising. It is important that you talk to your chiropractor if you feel worried about anything either during or after treatment.
How Many Visits Will I Need?
This will depend on:
- Your condition
- How severe it is
- How long you have had the condition
- How you respond to treatment
- How much of your chiropractor’s advice you follow
After your first examination and diagnosis, how long any further visits last will depend on your condition and the treatment you need.
The chiropractor will review your progress regularly and you will be asked to give your consent to any changes to your treatment plan. They will discuss carrying out further investigations or referring you to your GP if your condition does not improve.
(source: GCC 2010)