For most patients, adjustments do not hurt. They usually feel amazing! Now, there are times when an adjustment can hurt. For example, patients who are new to chiropractic may be nervous for one reason or another; maybe they don’t know what to expect or maybe they have heard someone’s story of a bad experience. That nervousness often leads to involuntary stiffening during the adjustment which can cause discomfort. Staying as relaxed as possible during an adjustment is the best way to ensure a pain free experience. Another reason a patient might stiffen during an adjustment is if they don’t quite trust their chiropractor yet. This is completely normal, especially for newer patients. However, most chiropractors are very well trained and are very good at what they do, so there is no reason not to trust their abilities. A chiropractor would NEVER intentionally hurt a patient. If you don’t trust them as a person, well that’s a good reason to seek treatment with another chiropractor. An adjustment to the spine or an extremity may be uncomfortable if the misalignment was caused by an injury, such as an ankle sprain or whiplash from a car accident. This is because the soft tissues surrounding that joint are already inflamed and irritated. So just be aware that the adjustment may not feel the greatest at the time, but that discomfort won’t last long. Studies show that adjusting a joint as quickly as possible following an injury can greatly improve overall healing time.
Neck pain and some types of headaches are treated through precise cervical manipulation. Cervical manipulation, often called a neck adjustment, works to improve joint mobility in the neck, restoring range of motion and reducing muscle spasm, which helps relieve pressure and tension. Neck manipulation, when performed by a skilled and well-educated professional such as a doctor of chiropractic, is a remarkably safe procedure.