Premier Chiropractic Clinic

What to Expect On Your First Chiropractic Visit

Never been to a Chiropractor before?

That’s ok! We’re going to walk you through what to expect  on your first appointment at Premier Chiropractic Clinic.

Your first appointment will be the longest appointment and it may take anywhere from 30-60 minutes. During this appointment your doctor is going to review your intake paperwork. To make your appointment go a little more smoothly we can send you the new patient paperwork to your email! If you fill out the paper work before your appointment the doctor will have an opportunity to review your condition prior to coming in, which may save you some time in your appointment. Filling out the paper work a head of time also lets August (our office manager) get a start on helping you figure out what your health insurance company will cover. (No insurance? No worries. We can work with you.)

The intake paperwork and first visit will be a conversation about your chief complaint, overall health, and family health history. Your doctor wants to know what happened that lead you to seek chiropractic care. Was it a fall? Was it chronic use? A car accident? A workman’s comp injury? Slept funny? Over use? Is your complaint related to a condition you are managing? Knowing what lead you to this point in pain will help your doctor create a treatment plan specific to you. It will also help you doctor determine if chiropractic care is the right method to manage your condition. Chiropractic care is GREAT at managing musculoskeletal pain, but not every ache is musculoskeletal in nature so on the first visit your doctor’s job is to rule out any ‘red flags’ and make sure you are in the right place. This is why a detailed exam is SO IMPORTANT. Once your doctor determines that your condition can be managed through Chiropractic care, it is important to discuss what your goals are with treatment. Are you trying to  feel better so you can train for something? Are you trying to feel better to lose weight? Improve range of motion? Just sick of being in pain?

After your doctor  has a better upstanding of your condition, health history, and goals it is time for the actual exam part. This may include checking how you move, your posture, reflexes, and gently testing which positions/movements may increase or decrease your pain. All of this information will help your doctor rule out ‘red flags,’ and help your doctor determine your individual care plan. 

Unlike some offices, at Premier Chiropractic Clinic we like to do the history, exam, and first treatment all in the same day. That is why your first appointment may take up to an hour. Some offices split up the exam and  treatment to save you some in office time on your first visit, but we want to try to get to work on managing the condition ASAP so we do it all in one visit.

What does treatment look like?

This is going to vary from person to person. But typically it’s a 3 step process. 1) Myofascia work 2) Chiropractic Adjustment 3) Homework. 

1) Myofascial work:

“Myo” means muscle and “fascial,” is fascia. Fascia is the connective tissue that surrounds all of your muscles, it is full of blood vessels and nerves. When muscle and fascia are not moving well it can cause pain, discomfort and those pesky muscle knots. Myofascia/soft tissue work may be provided by your doctor using a metal tool, cupping, or manually. SIDE TANGENT: Interesting enough when you are in pain your 2 point discrimination can change and widen. What this means is your pain is causing your brain to be confused on how to interpret sensory (feeling) information. Myofascial work can help your brain re-understand how to process sensory information and can make measurable improvements on your 2 point discrimination. WILD RIGHT?! 2 point discrimination is your body/brain ability to be able to tell, ‘hey, I’m being contacted with 2 points of contact, not 1’ When you are in pain your 2 point discrimination distance is further apart on the painful body part than compared to people who are not experiencing pain in that body part. But myofascia work can help improve 2 point discrimination.

2) Chiropractic Adjustment:

typically a manual movement that your doctor uses to help your joints more optimally. When your joints are not moving as well as they should be, your doctor will help them move by applying a specific force to a joint. Adjustments can be preformed on any joint in the body, not just the back. Your chiropractic Adjustment may make a popping or clicking sound, or it may not. The sound is neither good or bad, it simply may happen. Some times your doctor will use a small device to preform the adjustment, but typically it is done hands on.

3) Homework:

movement assignments that will help you get out of pain. Home work can be an important part of your healing process. Typically homework is used to help you stretch or strengthen various body parts. The goal of treatment is to decrease pain and then train so you can stay out of pain. (homework is FOREVER) We want to use homework to help you get out of pain and then it becomes preventative so you don’t land your self in this painful position again.

Treatment Tools we use:

  • Instrument Assisted Soft tissue Mobilization (IASTM)
    • common IASTM brands include Graston, FAKTR, RockBlades, and gua sha. Gua sha is the original IASTM and has been around for hundreds of years. IASTM is another myofascial technique that has the benefit of increased circulation and fascia stimulation.
  • Cupping
  • Flexion and distractions. 
  • Prescriptive exercise
  • E-stim
  • Ultra- sounds
  • Cold laser
  • Flossing
  • Activator

Making the appointment

 If you would like to schedule an appointment with us feel free to give us a call at 412-341-2505 or you can schedule an appointment on our website! You’re currently in the ‘blog’ section of the site, if you want to schedule online please look in the upper left hand corner of the screen for the 3 little horizontal bars (the hamburger). After clicking the hamburger, at the bottom of the list you should see a large button that says, “Book Appointment,” that should walk you through the appointment pretty easily. Don’t forget filling out the paper work online may speed up the first visit time. But no worries if you can’t we have paper copies sin the office.

The secret to booking online is to book AT LEAST 2 hours prior to when you want to visit us. If you decide you want to make an appointment with less than 2 hours notice please give us a call! The online schedule will not let you book with less than 2 hours before an appointment time, so it may say online that you cannot book but we may have a last minute opening to help you!

What to bring to your appointment

  • Copy of any recent X-ray, MRI, or other imaging relating to your visit.
    • Please bring a copy of the physical imaging/disc and the report
  • Your insurance card (if applicable)
  • A form of identification
  • Cash, credit card (we accept all major CC), or personal checks

Written by Dr. Ellora Pollard.

Dr. Pollard and Dr. Meenan are currently accepting new patients. Please call 412-341-2505 or check out our online scheduler to set up your appointment.

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