Frequently Asked Questions

Find out the answers Columbia MD and Towson MD Chiropractors frequently give to patients seeking to learn more about chiropractic care at their office. Learning more about chiropractic and its benefits can help you find the best chiropractor for you. If you have a question you don't see answered below, reach out to your team at Atlas Family Chiropractic Center at (410) 290-8100 or (410) 296-7030.

What is a chiropractor?

Doctors of Chiropractic – often referred to as chiropractors or chiropractic physicians – practice a drug-free, hands-on approach to health care that includes patient examination, diagnosis and treatment.

What does a chiropractor do?

Chiropractic is a health care profession that focuses on disorders of the musculoskeletal system, the nervous system, and the effects of these disorders on general health. Chiropractic care is used most often to treat musculoskeletal complaints, including but not limited to back pain, headaches, neck pain, pain in the arms or legs, and joint pain.

What does a chiropractor treat?

Most people think chiropractors simply treat back and neck pain, but it goes way beyond that! Chiropractors can treat:

  • Neck pain
  • Headaches & Migraines
  • Mid back pain
  • Lower back pain
  • Hip and Knee pain
  • Sciatica / Disc Injuries
  • Sport injuries
  • Auto accident injuries
  • Neuropathy Pain
  • And so much more……

What education and training does a chiropractor have?

To become a chiropractor, you are required to meet some of the most demanding educational requirements of any health care profession. Most chiropractors have already taken close to four years of pre-med undergraduate courses before they even apply to chiropractic college. This includes biology, psychology, physics, and chemistry. If you are accepted into an accredited chiropractic college, then the really demanding work begins. You’ll work through four academic years, which includes learning the hands-on adjusting techniques that will become a big part of your practice. The complete educational curriculum for chiropractors includes minimum classroom, laboratory, and clinical experience of 4,200 hours. Chiropractors have classroom requirements equal to or greater than traditional medical professionals. This in-depth training allows Doctor of Chiropractic to be considered primary care physicians. Primary care physicians are considered point of entry physicians and do not require a referral.

Are chiropractic adjustments safe?

Chiropractic is widely recognized as one of the safest drug-free, non-invasive therapies available. Chiropractic care is safe and very gentle.

How does a chiropractor treat lower back pain?

Chiropractors look at all aspects of a person’s health including their skeletal alignment, posture, lifestyle, diet, stress levels, and current exercise regime. Once a chiropractor has performed a thorough examination, they will develop a plan that incorporates one or more of the following strategies if appropriate:

  • Spinal Manipulation: Chiropractors use a variety of hands-on techniques to correct misalignments of the spine. These treatments will reduce pain, improve function, and restore the full range of motion to the back.
  • Spinal Decompression: Chiropractors use spinal decompression to gently stretch the lower back, reduce pain and increase the disc height.
  • Physical Therapy: Chiropractors can develop comprehensive physical therapy plans which are designed to improve the condition of your lower back. These plans include stretches and exercises which strengthen the spine and improve your posture.

How does a chiropractor treat neck pain?

The chiropractic approach to neck pain is to locate its underlying cause. This begins with a complete case history and thorough examination. Special attention is given to the structure of the spine, and its effect on the nervous system. Is the proper spinal alignment present? Is the head balanced? Are the shoulders level? These and other considerations are used to create a plan of adjustments to help improve the motion and position of spinal vertebrae. With improved structure and function, neck pain often diminishes or totally disappears - without addictive drugs or harmful side effects!

How does a chiropractor treat sciatica?

Chiropractic care is an ideal treatment modality for sciatica because it can directly address the root cause of the problem, and thereby both treat the cause and alleviate the symptoms. Chiropractors use a variety of treatment methods to address sciatic nerve pain:

  • Spinal Manipulations- the most important part of chiropractic care, this process frees the spine to move properly and restores proper alignment.
  • Spinal Decompression Therapy- is an excellent treatment option to help reduce sciatica caused by a herniated disc.
  • Electrical Stimulation- muscle stimulation applies an electrical current to reduce pain and muscle spasms.
  • Stretches and Exercises- these help stretch and strengthen the spine to ensure that your treatment will be as effective as possible.
  • Ice/Cold Therapy- helps reduce pain and inflammation.