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How much does a chiropractor cost?
May 26, 2022
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Last updated on August 22, 2023

How much does a chiropractor cost?

How much does a chiropractor cost?

The cost of chiropractic care is anywhere from $65-$300 per visit, and the national average cost of a chiropractic adjustment is about $95. The variance of cost largely depends on where you live, your insurance plan, the chiropractic clinic, and the type of treatment you are receiving.

Chiropractic care plays a key role in managing back pain, neck pain, musculoskeletal wellness, and general well-being. During your first visit, new patients can have an initial consultation with your chiropractor about your treatment plan and the treatment cost.

Before you book your first appointment, it is important to talk to your insurance provider about your specific insurance policy, and what chiropractic services are covered by your healthcare plan. Different modalities of treatment come with varying costs, and some chiropractic offices are more expensive than others. If you need X-rays, for instance, the cost of your care may be more expensive than if you only require soft tissue manual therapy.

What is a chiropractor?

Chiropractors help patients relieve pain related to the musculoskeletal system (joints, bones, muscles, etc...) Chiropractors will perform manual therapy or massage therapy to help align the spinal column and restore range of motion to joints. They work with patients of all ages and physical abilities while treating a wide range of conditions, not just those related to physical activity. Chiropractors are not medical doctors (physicians) but must obtain a license to practice.

Chiropractors can help treat conditions related to:

  • Neck pain
  • Headaches
  • Back pain
  • Limited movement

Some chiropractors offer alternative forms of therapy such as dietary/ lifestyle adjustments, massage, and acupuncture. In most states, chiropractors can receive licensure to practice acupuncture as a part of a holistic treatment plan.

Why should I see a chiropractor?

Chiropractors treat headaches and pain in the neck and lower back. They help improve patients' physical function, even after just one visit. Chiropractic treatment may be right for you if you have any of the following:

Misalignment: Having a misaligned body can hinder your range of motion and cause long-term pain. When your body is aligned - meaning it maintains a relatively straight line from your head to your toes - you can feel significant health benefits.

Osteoarthritis: Osteoarthritis is a common condition that affects millions of people around the world. It is a form of arthritis in which the cartilage around the bones wears down over time. While this type of arthritis can affect any joint in the body, it is most common in the spine, hips, hands, and knees.

Lower Back Pain: Chiropractic and manual therapies may help treat muscle strains in your lower back, also known as your lumbar spine. Studies have shown that chiropractic care may be able to help people experiencing lower back pain without the significant use of medication.

Sciatica: This is a condition in which the nerve that runs along the lower back and down each buttock gets inflamed, causing shooting pain in the lower back. It can also cause other symptoms, such as foot and leg numbness.

Range of motion issues: If you suffer from range of motion issues such as a frozen shoulder, chiropractic therapy might be an option worth looking into. A study done on frozen shoulder patients in 2012 found that chiropractic therapy helped improve range of motion.

Scoliosis: Scoliosis is a sideways curvature of the spine that most often happens during the growth spurt you have just before you hit puberty. Scoliosis can also be caused by other things such as cerebral palsy and muscular dystrophy. Chiropractic therapy may be an option for those who have scoliosis. A 28-person study completed in 2011 noted a 9-10 degree change in scoliosis patients at the end of a 24-month treatment. There is not enough evidence about the safety of chiropractic in pediatrics. If your child has scoliosis and you are interested in this type of treatment, it is recommended you speak with a doctor about the best treatment options.

Whiplash: This is a neck injury, commonly caused by rear-end car accidents, in which the neck has a sudden back-and-forth movement, much like how a whip is cracked. With the use of joint manipulation, chiropractic care, while paired with other treatments like exercise and physical therapy, provide pain relief for whiplash.

What are the benefits of chiropractic care?

Chiropractors can help patients with several conditions such as back, neck, and shoulder pain; sciatica issues; and sports injuries. In addition to pain management and pain relief, a chiropractor can also help improve your quality of life and overall health by offering massage therapy and at-home exercise treatment plans.

Back pain is one of the leading causes of disability in Americans. Lower back pain can lead to missed work, decreased range of motion, and ballooning health care costs. Back pain is the leading cause of opioid prescriptions in the United States. While these drugs can play a key role in pain management, they are also very addictive and tied to thousands of overdose death rates. Acupuncture--often offered in chiropractic clinics--is another form of pain relief that can help improve quality of life and reduce back pain. Undergoing acupuncture has been shown to effectively treat chronic pain, which can reduce your need for potentially addictive opioid medication.

Chiropractors play a key role in helping relieve pain and restore the quality of life that you deserve.

Do health insurance companies cover chiropractic care?

It depends on your insurance coverage, the type of care you need, and the frequency of your chiropractic appointments. Many insurance companies will cover an initial consultation, and several follow-up adjustment therapy sessions, but long-term chiropractic care may cost more out-of-pocket. Medicare and Medicaid, for instance, will cover spinal adjustments at most chiropractic clinics. Further treatment, such as X-ray imaging or ultrasound therapy may come with a higher copay, and if your deductible hasn’t been met, you may have to pay for a large portion of your chiropractic visit. Because of this, it is recommended that you speak to your chiropractor and insurance company before booking your first appointment.

What is a chiropractic adjustment?

Chiropractic adjustment is a special treatment option that can be used to address lower back pain resulting from injury (sports injuries, injuries from car accidents, etc...), misalignment, sciatica, and scoliosis.

Also referred to as spinal adjustments, chiropractic adjustments can help relieve pain and restore a healthy lifestyle to patients who are dealing with nagging discomfort and tightness. Spinal manipulation is often done with the hands, like a massage. The chiropractor will apply sudden and controlled force to joints in the back; this sets joints in alignment and restores range of motion in the back.

It is common for patients to experience soreness and pain after a spinal manipulation session. This is due to the realignment of joints and muscles in your back and the sudden force applied during adjustment. These side effects usually clear up within a few days.

Studies have shown that spinal adjustment is effective in treating lower back and neck pain as well as headaches. If you have any existing injuries or persistent pain, talk to your chiropractor before any adjustment session.

Your doctor may look to avoid the area causing you pain or may adjust joints in the body around that area to help with alignment.

What is the difference between a chiropractor and a physical therapist?

Chiropractors and physio/physical therapists both treat pain and range of motion issues. However, physical therapists (or PT) generally focus on the whole body, while chiropractors have special training to help treat musculoskeletal conditions related to the back, neck, and shoulder joints. If you are experiencing persistent headaches or migraines, a chiropractor may be able to help with those too, as they are often a side effect of persistent back pain.

Some techniques that chiropractors use to specially treat the back, neck, and upper body joints include:

  • Chiropractic adjustments/ Spinal manipulation
  • Joint bracing/ taping
  • Spinal decompression therapy
  • Range of motion exercises/ stretches

In most cases, insurance covers both physical therapy and chiropractic care. Talk to your insurance company and a primary care provider before booking an appointment with a chiropractor to make the most fully informed decision about what type of pain management care is right for you.

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Sesame content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. If you have a medical concern, it is critical to seek the advice of your physician or another qualified health provider with any questions. If you are facing a medical emergency, call 911 or visit the nearest emergency room immediately.