When it comes to medical care and practices, there is no doubt that there is an enormous amount of misinformation and disinformation that is spread about various types of practices and care.
The truth is that there is an enormous amount of money at stake in the health and wellness industry, which means that there is also a massive amount of unscrupulous marketing aimed at discrediting one type of practice in favor of another. In many cases, healing techniques that have been around for decades and in some cases centuries are often dismissed in favor of newer, more modern techniques and practices, often involving a lot of expensive equipment and technology.
Just because a practice has been used for decades or even centuries, however, doesn’t mean it’s outdated or even unscientific. In most cases, it simply means it is still around because it actually works. Unfortunately, however, it is also true that certain practices and techniques were originally tied together with various spiritual or esoteric underpinnings.
While modern practitioners have separated the legitimate scientific practice from the spiritual or esoteric parts of the practice, the mainstream medical community often seizes upon these earliest roots to discredit the scientific or legitimate portion of the practice that still remains. One of these such practices is chiropractic treatments.
Although chiropractic has evolved into a strictly evidence-based practice, which has been shown again and again to be a safe, effective form of treatment, it continues to be regularly dismissed by the mainstream medical community due to the accompanying spiritual elements espoused by early practitioners.
That being said, as a greater and greater body of evidence-based research is collected, chiropractic is gaining greater and greater traction among even its staunchest opponents. Chiropractic is now gaining the same type of widespread acceptance as yoga, which is another practice that has been shown to have a wide range of legitimate health benefits but also has deep ties to ancient spiritual practices.
Yes, but are chiropractic treatments safe?
What many people may not be aware of is that today, chiropractors are actually doctors that have to undergo the same education and credentialing as any other type of doctor. Chiropractors are granted a Doctor of Chiropractic (DC) degree, which is considered to be a “First Professional Degree” and directly on par with a number of other medical degrees, including a Doctor of Medicine (MD) degree or a Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (DO) degree.
Similarly, dentists are also doctors that receive either a Doctor of Dental Surgery (DDS) or a Doctor of Medicine in Dentistry (DMD) degree. So, to put that another way, going to a chiropractor is every bit as safe as going to a medical doctor or dentist. They are educated, credentialed and licensed the same way any other type of doctor is and they are, in fact, doctors.
The institutions that chiropractors attend are also licensed and credentialed by either a regional accrediting agency such as the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools; or a National accrediting agency, such as the the New York State Board of Regents. These are the same agencies that accredit and certify other types of medical schools as well. In addition to receiving a degree, chiropractors in the U.S. are also required to pass rigorous board-type exams the same way any other type of medical professional must do in order to practice chiropractic professionally.
With all that being said, however, it is important to understand that there are always going to be inherent risks with any type of medical treatment or care. For that matter, life itself is risky.
Every year, millions of people die in car accidents and yet every day, billions of people around the world get behind the wheel or climb into the passenger seats of billions of cars. Just because we do things every day does not necessarily mean they are 100% safe, but rather that we weigh the risks against the benefits and conclude that the benefits far outweigh the risks.
While chiropractic care is no more risky or dangerous than any other types of medical care, and may even be much less so, the bottom line is that all medical care is going to come with some element of risk. On the other hand, chiropractic care has a high degree of success in treating a number of conditions where traditional medical care has failed. These include:
- Low back pain
- Neck and shoulder pain
- Migraine headaches
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