Frequently asked chiropractor questions answered by Dr. O'Guin D.C.
How can I find a good chiropractor?

Finding the best chiropractor really means finding the best chiropractor for you. There are a variety of practitioners with differing styles and specialties. This can be a good thing if you find that specialty that matches what you’re looking for. This is not such a good thing if you need to have your back worked on and you end up with a chiropractor trying to sell you supplements. It’s advisable to search several websites and possibly even call offices. Ask questions and try to determine what services are offered. Some chiropractors tend to focus on nutrition others may only perform spinal manipulations. It’s important to find a practice style that matches what you need. The most important thing is to find a chiropractor that listens to you and is thorough.

Unfortunately there are some practices that sell unnecessary services or treatments. Some things to be aware of have been released by the American Chiropractic Association in Choosing Wisely.

Mostly, it is advisable to avoid a chiropractic office if they require an X-ray on all new patients. Some offices take these X-rays as a way to justify a long treatment plan to straighten a patient’s spine. In most cases, these treatment plans are unnecessary and patient education with postural exercises would be more appropriate. The next thing to be aware of are offices that sell long treatment plans. There are some offices that ask for a large sum of money up front. Most back or neck pain should resolve within 6 weeks, especially with proper therapy.

How is Dr. Jeffrey S. O'Guin different than others?

There are many options when it comes to choosing a therapy for back and neck pain. Just a few include massage, physical therapy, decompression, and utilizing a chiropractor. Dr. O’Guin recognizes the benefits, but also the limitations of each of these. Instead of trying to apply the same technique to every person, he provides individualized care. Because he offers each of the above services and more, he’s not limited to any one particular tool. The doctor can be precise in a diagnosis and apply the most appropriate therapy. Check out how we use Clinical Reasoning in Spine Pain.

Do I need an x-ray for my back pain?

With the majority of neck and back pain, imaging such as MRI and X-ray is not necessary. Some exception are in cases of a serious accident or injury or losing muscle strength from a pinched nerve. The American Chiropractic Association along with 7 other organizations have recommend that patients not get imaging during the first 6 weeks of pain. This is because most back pain will resolve naturally with the correct therapy. There’s also the fact that often times a coincidental finding on imaging will inappropriately be blamed for a patients pain. The most common example is finding arthritis on an X-ray and confusing that as the pain generator. The degree of arthritis someone has does not correlate well with the degree of pain or disability. The most appropriate means of investigation in most instances is good communication with patients, a thorough exam with orthopedic testing and some functional movement assessments.

Do I have to get adjusted?

There are many people who get nervous about the idea of being adjusted. Our office only wants to provide therapies that patients feel comfortable with. The added stress and anxiety of having something unwanted done is not good for the healing process. We always provide options for treatment and we’re willing to educate every step of the way. Some patients may never even need an adjustment because another form of therapy would be more suited. In cases where an adjustment is indicated, we can always use other forms of mobilization. This can include certain stretches or muscle energy techniques. With a muscle energy technique, patients are held in a stretched position while they push/contract their own muscles. Contracting the correct muscles while being held in a particular stretch can allow for self-mobilizations of joints.

How many times do I need to see the chiropractor?

The number of visits someone will need can vary based on several factors. The most important is what they are being treated for. Someone who simply slept in an awkward position may only need 1-2 sessions. On the other end of the spectrum is someone who has chronic nerve pain from long standing arthritis. The next factor is the healing capability of the patient. Some factors influencing this can be age, diet, stress levels, drug/alcohol use, fitness levels etc. Because of these factors, there is no way to know for certain how many sessions will be necessary. Our office makes every attempt to ensure as quick a recovery as possible.

Is chiropractic safe?

Chiropractic care is an incredibly safe and non-invasive therapy for treating back and neck pain. Chiropractors have some of the lowest malpractice insurance premiums in comparison to all other health physicians. The most common side effects are that a patient might feel sore after the first 1-2 treatments. This is more likely if the patient is not active or has been immobile for a while. The soreness is similar to the soreness experienced the day after a new exercise routine.


The notion of chiropractic care as being dangerous is usually fueled by a sensationalized media headline once or twice per year. We should all be aware that much of the media is more in the business of creating news than it is of reporting news. A typical news report will sometimes say that a patient suffered a vertebral artery dissection (a type of stroke) hours or even days after a neck adjustment. The reality is that these incidences are rare, with the occurrence being about 1/100,000. This is similar to the incidence among the general population. I don’t say this to diminish the risk, only to put the actual risks into perspective. There are risks associated with chiropractic treatment just as there are with any medical treatment. In our office we make every attempt to minimize risks of injury, explain each procedure and give patients options every step of the way.

Does chiropractic work?

When asking if chiropractic works, one is really asking if hands on therapies such as massage and spinal manipulation work. These are the preferred treatments of most chiropractors. The word Chiropractic actually refers to being done by hands. Essentially, chiropractors perform manual therapies to people with back and neck pain. Visit WebMD here, and you’ll see that the medical field is starting to see the value of these therapies as well. The best outcomes are obtained with these hands on therapies combined with education, posture correction and stability exercises. This is always the goal when working with our patients. Dr. O’Guin likes to consider himself more of a spinal health coach, educating patients every step of the way.

What’s causing my back pain?


What is functional rehabilitation?

Functional rehabilitation is a therapeutic approach that helps in the prevention of future injuries. Once a particular part of the body is injured, it is much more likely to be a problem area in the future. Back pain especially, is prone to becoming reinjured. Recurring back and neck pain is a very burdening condition on individuals lives and the health care system as a whole.

Will my insurance cover chiropractic?

The majority of people want to use their health insurance and we accept almost every plan that has chiropractic benefits. There are a lot of people with unused benefits because they are unaware that they have chiropractic coverage. The average co-pay for patients is usually around $30. Each plan is different though. Some plans provide full coverage and there is no payment needed by a patient. Other plans have a high deductible and may be responsible for the full amount after adjustments are made. This may be closer to $50.

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