Whether you're new to chiropractic or an old hand, these are questions you may have:
- How long does a first visit take?
- Do I need to bring anything with me on the first visit?
- How can I tell if I have medical or insurance coverage?
- How can I tell if I have a condition that can be helped by chiropractic?
- Will I have to take X-rays?
- Do chiropractic adjustments hurt?
- What kinds of conditions do chiropractors treat?
- Does chiropractic treat sports injuries?
- What if I'm injured at work?
- Can chiropractic help someone over 65?
- Do chiropractors treat children?
- If I get into an auto accident, do I have to see a medical doctor first?
- Do you have to have an injury to see a chiropractor?
- Can chiropractic help with just one adjustment?
- Can it take a while before real results are felt?
- What can be the cause of delayed results?
- What happens after the first visit?
- What payment options are available?
- Will I have to pay up-front for a treatment program?
How long does a first visit take?
The first visit takes about 30 minutes, depending on the nature of your problem. Serious problems and complex problems may take longer to evaluate. In the first visit, the doctor will talk with you about your problem. This consultation will help to determine whether your condition can be helped with chiropractic care. The doctor will then do an examination of the affected area and related areas to determine the type of treatments that are best for you. Treatments often begin on the very first visit and the doctor will explain the goal of the treatments. You and the doctor will work out a reasonable schedule of visits for your condition.
Do I need to bring anything with me on the first visit?
On the first visit, you will be asked to fill out a patient information form, which will also request information about insurance coverage. You should have your health plan card or auto insurance information ready. If you have medical papers relating to your condition, or if you have taken x-rays or MR's, it will be helpful if you bring them with you for the doctor to review. If you are taking several medications for this and other conditions, bring a list of your medications with dosage levels and how often you take them.
How can I tell if I have medical or insurance coverage?
The best way is to call our office (593-9992) with your insurance information before making an appointment. We can help you to check if you have coverage for chiropractic services.
How can I tell if I have a condition that can be helped by chiropractic?
There is no way of knowing for sure without an examination by the doctor. We cannot give you a diagnosis over the phone, because a proper diagnosis can be made only after an examination. The doctor must see you in person in order to complete an evaluation. He will explain his findings and recommend the type of treatment that's best for you.
Will I have to take X-rays?
Most of our patients can be treated without x-rays. If you have already had x-rays or other diagnostic tests for your condition, additional x-rays will not be necessary, either. If you haven't had x-rays or other studies and the doctor suspects a serious problem, he will recommend such tests.
Do chiropractic adjustments hurt?
Not for most people. Occasionally, when a patient comes in to the office in severe pain, adjustments may be painful due to the condition. However, most patients find chiropractic adjustments to be very comfortable. If you experience a problem after an adjustment, be sure to bring this up with the doctor. Sometimes a little discomfort is expected, especially if you have had your condition for a long time. It's always best to seek care at the earliest sign of physical or functional difficulty.
What kinds of conditions do chiropractors treat?
The list of conditions is extensive. In general, chiropractors treat neuro-musculo-skeletal conditions. This is just a fancy way of saying that problems with the nerves, muscles, joints and bones of the body may be helped with chiropractic treatments. Symptoms such as pain, tingling, numbness, weakness, headaches, muscle spasms, and crooked posture may be indications of a neuro-musculo-skeletal condition. If these symptoms develop after an accident, injury, or prolonged repetitive activity, you should have a chiropractic evaluation. Although chiropractors are commonly known as back doctors, we treat many kinds of conditions. Symptoms persisting longer than a week should be evaluated before a more serious condition occurs.
Does chiropractic treat sports injuries?
Chiropractic care is an excellent treatment for sports injuries because most sports injuries are musculo-skeletal in nature. Every joint in the body can potentially be injured by playing sports. Every muscle can be strained. Chiropractic treatment is a proven mode of treatment for acute sports injuries.
What if I'm injured at work?
Many work injuries are successfully treated with chiropractic. Anyone in the state of Hawaii who is injured at work is eligible for chiropractic care. Treatments are covered 100%. Work injuries can have a sudden onset such as a fall or lifting something too heavy. People don't know, however, that many types of work injuries develop slowly over time due to repetitive motions such as typing, sorting, bending, twisting, etc. Most people can put up with minor aches and pains at work. However, many serious or severe work injuries first started out as nothing more than a minor ache that gradually escalated into a severe condition. Don't let this be you. Severe conditions are very hard to resolve even with the best of care. You don't need a referral from a medical doctor to see a chiropractor. The chiropractor can be your first contact.
Can chiropractic help someone over 65?
Yes. If you have a chiropractic condition, nothing would be better for you. An evaluation in the office will establish your diagnosis. Treatments are gentle and comfortable. Medicare provides for chiropractic care and your portion is very affordable. You must pay for the initial examination (and x-rays, if necessary). After that, you pay just 20% of an office visit cost, usually between $6 and $12 per visit. People who have HMSA's Akamai Advantage plan, Kaiser's Senior Advantage plan, or other Medicare advantage plans are eligible for chiropractic care. Most people don't think about using these benefits even though it is part of their health plan.
Note: At the beginning of each year, there is a deductible amount that first must be met for people with Part B Medicare plans. For 2019, the first $185 of any combination of charges for medical services is the patient's responsibility. After that, the co-pay amounts per visit shown above will apply.
Do chiropractors treat children?
Yes, all the time. No one has more bumps and falls than a young child. Yet, most parents ignore the possibility that their children could be hurting their young spines, bones, and joints. If your child plays one or more sports during the year, periodic spinal checkups are a must. Recent medical statistics show a startling problem of childhood spinal injuries that used to be found only in adult athletes. A child's bones are going through rapid growth until about age 15 or 16. A serious bone or joint injury before 10 could result in an irreversible problem when the child is an adult. A simple visit to the chiropractor and a gentle adjustment could insure that your child grows up strong and straight. Spinal injuries don't only happen to adults.
If I get into an auto accident, do I have to see a medical doctor first?
No. You don't need permission or a referral from a medical doctor to see a chiropractic doctor for treatment of your auto accident injuries. Hawaii law recognizes chiropractors as "portal of entry" doctors, which means they can be the first doctors you see following an accident. In fact, a chiropractor could be your primary treating doctor for your auto injuries. Even if you are seeing a traditional medical doctor for your accident injuries, you can also see a chiropractor at the same time because chiropractic treatments are separate and unique and we perform services that medical doctors do not. Your medical doctor may not know this, so it's up to you to make the right choices.
Do I have to have an injury to see a chiropractor?
No. Everyone can benefit from chiropractic care. The way you work, sit, stand, sleep, play sports, work on hobbies, and walk can be the cause of gradual spinal problems. We call them "subluxations". The bones and joints can become misaligned, gradually losing their natural relationship and motion within the body. If you play sports or live an active lifestyle, your chances of adversely affecting your spine increase. Exercise and activity, done correctly using good body mechanics, can sustain a healthy body. But, let's face it, most people don't exercise enough, or stretch properly before physical activity, or sit correctly, or stand with an erect posture. Restless sleeping with a lot of tossing and turning all night can create spinal problems. On the other hand, restless sleeping could mean that you already have a spinal problem.
Simple things such as the way you get in and out of your car, the way you carry your groceries or your kids, the times you almost slip and fall, or whenever you carry something too heavy can all cause spinal distortions that lead to symptoms such as pain, tingling, numbness, weakness, and tightness of your core body or limbs. These symptoms are your body's alarm system, warning you that something bad is happening on the inside of your body where you can't see it. Heed the warning. Get an expert to evaluate your problem.
Can chiropractic help with just one adjustment?
Yes, sometimes. Other times, a few adjustments may be necessary. (Severe or complicated conditions do not respond with just a few treatments--see below) Many people like to keep up some kind of regular chiropractic care even after their initial problem resolves because they see the benefits of staying healthy.
Can it take a while before real results are felt?
Yes, when a problem is serious, long-standing, or complicated by other factors. Some problems have developed over months or years. Under these conditions, it's unrealistic to expect an immediate result no matter what kind of care you receive. In these cases, you must be patient …and perseverant. Some people don't want to wait a few weeks to get results, but, if they don't get treatment, the time will go by anyway, and they will still be stuck with the same problem.
What can be the cause of delayed results?
Some causes are: age, deteriorated physical condition, complications posed by other health problems, previous injuries, poor lifestyle, poor nutrition, unwillingness to cooperate with the doctor's recommendations. If you take more than one prescription medication, your body could already be in a suppressed and compromised condition. Your body's natural ability to respond to chiropractic treatments can be slowed or complicated by strong medications. Following up with the chiropractor's treatment recommendations is a must.
What happens after the first visit?
If the doctor feels that an additional treatment is necessary, we will schedule an appointment for you before you leave. The doctor may have advice for you about stretching, exercise, nutrition, or lifestyle modification if he feels that this information will improve your condition.
What payment options are available?
If you have insurance coverage for chiropractic, you will be responsible for the balance of payment (co-pay) and any services that are not covered by your insurance. We will bill the insurance company for you. All patient payments must be made at the time of appointment. We accept cash, checks, and credit cards.
Will I have to pay up front for a treatment program?
Absolutely not. You will pay for services as they are rendered. Some patients need only a single treatment so a treatment program is unnecessary. If additional treatments are required, the doctor will discuss this with you and you will be included in the decision to continue treatments. Every patient is different. There is no formula or pre-payment plan that fits all patients.