Many people who want to join the medical profession do so out of a sense of wanting to help other people feel their best. It’s natural to want to help others in need, but doctors make it their lifelong profession and are dedicated to the wellbeing of other people. But, at the same time, a lot of patients are becoming disenfranchised with the mainstream medical model that focuses on sick-care rather than healthcare. Enter chiropractic care.
What Is Chiropractic Care?
Aside from the snapping and popping, what is chiropractic care? It’s a modality that focuses on joint mobility in the neck and back as well as treating muscle pain. Chiropractors, in some sense, become pain specialists out of necessity. Most people who come to see a chiropractor are in some kind of pain or are experiencing some kind of body dysfunction.
Most chiropractors use a variety of tools to help massage the muscles and joints. In some cases, X-rays are taken to see if there’s a physiological problem (a compressed disc or physical misalignment of some bone structures. A true diagnostic misalignment of skeletal structures doesn’t always correlate with pain but, when there is pain, misalignment may be the cause.
In cases like this, it’s helpful to know exactly what the chiropractor is dealing with, hence the x-rays.
Job growth in this profession also looks good, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, which predicts steady growth through 2020. Of course, statistics won’t get new chiropractic patients coming through the door. You have to have a good education, the will to succeed, and a good marketing plan.
Are You A Real Doctor?
Years ago, chiropractic care was derided as a quasi-medical profession. Many doctors today are still skeptical of its benefits. And, while there is some risk inherent in some types of chiropractic adjustments, those risks are often overblown.
A chiropractor specializes in doing something you probably have done your entire life: cracking your joints. When there is a true join mobility problem, a chiropractor can “unstick” those joints and provide instant relief.
Chiropractors also often employ complimentary treatments like Active Release Therapy (ART) or trigger point therapy as a way to help muscles relax so that they respond better to adjustments.
To become a chiropractor, you need to go to school. Fortunately, most schools are a little more liberal in their entrance requirements than traditional medical schools. Of course, this does depend on the school. Some schools are stricter than others. That can be both a good and bad thing. On the one hand, it may be easy to get into a school. On the other, this kind of standard may encourage a lot of people to enter the school and produce low-quality candidates who then graduate and go out into the world providing sub-standard care.
But, like any profession, the test of quality is in results and the individual’s willingness to learn as well as their commitment to the profession.
How Long Does Schooling Last?
Schooling is typically 4 years – half that of medical school. However, if you’ve not yet met your undergrad and grad school requirements, it can take 6 to 8 years. Expect to pay between $90,000 and $100,000 for a four-year degree.
Bonnie Stephens used to be a part of a busy chiropractic office. Now retired, she loves to help others by writing about health and medical issues. Look for her illuminating posts on many medical and health blog sites.