- 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 us (the GCC).
By law, the GCC must
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
set and monitor standards of education and training
set standards of practice and conduct
deal with any complaints about the conduct or practice of chiropractors.
Will my doctor approve?
Increasingly, GPs are recognising chiropractic as an effective complementary treatment, particularly for back pain. However, some are less keen to refer patients to chiropractors. You do not need a GP's referral to visit a chiropractor.
Can I get treatment on the NHS?
How long does treatment take?
The first consultation takes, on average, about half an hour, and a treatment session about 15 minutes, but this will vary according to your condition and your needs.
How long will it take to get better?
How often do I need to come for treatment?
An average course of treatment may entail five or six visits over two or three weeks, but every case is assessed individually, and it is important to keep your appointments, and make regular visits. Discuss this with your chiropractor, who will explain your treatment program to you.
What is the popping noise of the adjustment?
When the two surfaces of a joint are moved apart rapidly, as happens in a chiropractic adjustment, there is a change of pressure within the joint space. This may sometimes cause a bubble of gas to 'pop' - but this sound is not significant, and does not hurt.
Have I got a 'trapped nerve' or a 'slipped disc'?
Will treatment hurt?
Manipulation, when carried out correctly by a qualified practitioner, is not painful. If you have acute muscle spasm, when even the lightest touch hurts, there may be some discomfort. Sometimes, if you have had a problem for some time, you may feel sore whilst your body starts to adjust. Your chiropractor will tell you if this is likely to happen.
Are all patients adjusted in the same way?
Should I bring my family for chiropractic checks?
Yes. The strength of chiropractic is that it can help prevent discomfort, pain and even disease, and is suitable for everyone. It is entirely appropriate to visit a chiropractor even if you have no pain, as restrictions in movement can often be detected before symptoms appear.
What is the difference between chiropractic and osteopathy?
How are chiropractors trained and qualified?
It takes at least four years of full-time study to become a chiropractor at the Anglo~European College of Chiropractic (AECC) or the University of Glamorgan, which offer a BSc degree. The University of Surrey runs a two-year MSc course. The courses are followed by a postgraduate year spent on the British Chiropractic Association's Vocational Training Scheme (VTS), which students spend in a chiropractic clinic with the support of a qualified Trainer. Upon successful completion of the VTS the student is awarded the Diploma in Chiropractic (DC). Only chiropractors trained at an accredited college can become members of the British Chiropractic Association (BCA), the largest association for the profession in the UK established since 1925, and now representing over 800 UK chiropractor
The Chiropractors Act received Royal Assent in July 1994. Resulting from it, the General Chiropractic Council was announced in January 1997. It is responsible for setting standards of both education and conduct within the profession, and requires all chiropractors to be registered to practice legally in the UK.
Is chiropractic treatment safe? Even if I've already had surgery?
Chiropractic is remarkably safe when treatment is carried out by a properly qualified practitioner. Your chiropractor is trained to recognise conditions which require referral elsewhere, and can treat you even after surgeryWhy should I return if I'm feeling fine?
Your chiropractor has treated you, so allowing your body to heal, but if you continue the lifestyle which caused the original condition, regular treatment should also continue.
Is there anything wrong with me 'cracking' my neck or back myself?
Is there scientific proof that chiropractic works?
Particularly for low back pain, yes. The Clinical Standards Advisory Group recommended in 19941 that there should be earlier access to the manipulative therapies and a redistribution of resources within the NHS to make this happen. In September 1996 the Royal College of General Practitioners issued guidelines for GPs which recommend manipulative treatment within the first six weeks for patients with low back pain. They also state that the risks of manipulation are very low in skilled hands.
Now research is beginning to concentrate on how chiropractic affects other areas of the musculo-skeletal system, including a trial at the University of Odense in Denmark 2on the effect of spinal manipulation in the treatment of neck-related headache and a Canadian patient satisfaction stud y3 which shows chiropractic as an effective means of resolving or improving- back and/or neck pain.
27th May 2009
British Chiropractic Association comment on NICE guidelines regarding non-specific low back pain
The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) has published new guidelines to improve the early management of persistent non-specific low back pain.
The guidelines recommend what care and advice the NHS should offer to people affected by low back pain.
NICE assessed the effectiveness, safety and cost-effectiveness of available treatments and one recommendation is to offer a course of manual therapy, including spinal manipulation, spinal mobilisation and massage. This treatment may be provided by a range of health professionals, including chiropractors.
Spinal manipulation is part of the package of care that chiropractors offer and, by including this within the guidelines, it will hopefully increase accessibility to these beneficial treatments.
Information supplied by the British Chiropractic Association.
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