How Can You Tell Whether Chiropractic Care Is Safe?

If you are like 80% of Americans, you have experienced back or neck pain. Chiropractic treatment can help alleviate some of the pain but you should understand how to tell whether the chiropractor you plan to see is safe. 

In this article, we’re discussing some of the ways patients can determine if chiropractic care is safe for them. Overall, chiropractic care is a safe form of therapy so long as a licensed chiropractor carries out the adjustments. Also, your chiropractor should be licensed in the state where you receive care to ensure quality standards. For example, if you seek treatment in Denver Colorado, you receive care from a Denver chiropractor

Continue reading to learn more about how you can ensure your chiropractic care is safe. 

What Is Chiropractic Adjustment?

Chiropractic adjustment describes a procedure where trained specialists use their hands or a small instrument to apply controlled, sudden force to the spinal joints and relieve pressure from the spinal column. The goal of spinal manipulation is to improve your body’s physical function by relieving pressure from joints, thus improving their mobility. 

What Is the Point of Chiropractic Adjustment?

Lower back and neck pain and headaches are the most common reasons people seek chiropractic adjustments. People can also lower their blood pressure, improve scoliosis, sciatica, reduce inflammation, and improve neurological conditions. 

Improving Lower Back and Neck Pain

This is perhaps the most common benefit of chiropractic adjustment. 80% of Americans experience some sort of back or neck pain in their lifetime. Medications and surgeries are options for this type of pain, but if you can avoid them, the side effects and long-term negative effects of these treatment options are not preferable. They can also be ineffective and expensive.

Chiropractic adjustments can significantly reduce the pain in a patient’s neck or back using a non-invasive technique. Chiropractic adjustments are also more affordable than surgery or medication.

Blood Pressure

Chiropractic adjustments can have the same effect as taking certain high blood pressure medications. High blood pressure medications can have the following negative side effects:

  • Fatigue
  • Nausea
  • Dizziness
  • Anxiety
  • Weight loss

Adjusmtents have also shown to improve blood pressure in those suffering from low blood pressure. 


Scoliosis describes a condition where a patient has an abnormal curvature of the spine. Scoliosis can cause pain, abnormal posture, a reduction in your range of motion, and trouble breathing. Chiropractic therapy combined with physical therapy can help treat and prevent the progression of scoliosis. The efficacy of chiropractic adjustments varies depending on the patient, but it can be a viable alternative to surgery. 


Sciatica describes a condition that patients experience in which pain radiates down their legs due to a damaged or pressured sciatic nerve. This type of chronic pain can lead to over-medicating and severe pain. Chiropractic adjustments can relieve pressure from the sciatic nerve and studies have shown that patients who receive sciatica treatment can reduce the number of days they feel pain. 

Reduced Inflammation

Inflammation is one of the most common causes of chronic pain, joint inflammation, and tension within your joints. Chronic inflammation has also been linked to a number of diseases, such as heart disease, chronic pain, and cancer.

Chiropractic adjustments can reduce inflammation, reduce muscle tension, and relieve joint pain. Reduced inflammation can also reduce your risk of developing diseases linked to high inflammation. 

Improved Neurological Conditions

Chiropractic adjustments can increase the blood flow to the brain and thus, increase the flow of cerebrospinal fluid. This type of therapy can help people suffering from conditions such as multiple sclerosis and epilepsy. 


Chiropractic adjustments are safe when someone trained and licensed in chiropractic care performs them. However, there can be some serious complications involved in chiropractic care. Though these complications are rare, anyone considering chiropractic care should be familiar with the potential complications.

  • Herniated disks or a worsening of an existing disk herniation. 
  • Nerve compressions in the lower spinal column. 
  • Certain types of strokes after neck manipulation.

You shouldn’t receive chiropractic adjustments if you have the following conditions: 

  • Severe osteoporosis
  • Numbness, tingling, or loss of strength in an arm or leg
  • Cancer in your spine
  • An increased risk of stroke
  • A known bone abnormality in the upper neck

How Should You Prepare for Chiropractic Adjustments?

There should be no special preparation for chiropractic adjustments. However, you should be aware of the process. 

What Should You Expect At the Chiropractic Visit?

At your initial visit, your chiropractor will ask questions about your health history and they will perform a physical exam. This examination will take your particular ailments into consideration when determining a structured treatment plan. The chiropractor might also recommend other examinations or tests, such as X-rays.

During the Procedure 

During the typical chiropractic adjustment, your chiropractor will place you in a specific position to treat affected areas. You will often be positioned lying facedown on a special, padded chiropractic table. 

The chiropractor will use their hands to apply a controlled amount of force to your joints to release the pressure from the affected area. You might hear a popping or cracking sound as your chiropractor moves your joints during the treatment session. 

After the Procedure 

Some people can experience minor side effects in the days following a chiropractic adjustment. These effects include headaches, fatigue, or pain in certain parts of the body.

The Results 

You can tell whether chiropractic adjustments by the results you experience and the lack of side effects you experience following adjustments. The research studying the effects of chiropractic treatment varies but most suggest it has mild effects on your ailments. The efficacy is largely in-step with other forms of treatment. Some studies also suggest spinal manipulation can be effective for headaches and other spine-related conditions, such as neck pain. 

Not everyone responds to chiropractic adjustments and most of your results depend on your particular situation. If your symptoms fail to improve after several weeks of treatments, chiropractic adjustments might not be the best form of treatment for your condition.

The Bottom Line

Chiropractic adjustments are largely safe forms of therapy for many different conditions, such as neck and back pain, sciatica, scoliosis, and some neurological conditions. You can always tell whether chiropractic adjustments are working for you if they reduce your pain over time and  improve your mobility. 

There are some side effects and negative aspects of chiropractic treatment, such as herniated disks, and you should always consult with your doctor before commiting to a chiropractic treatment plan.