Chiropractic is a registered & regulated primary health care profession. Chiropractors undertake an intensive five year University Degree program and only chiropractors trained at recognised educational establishments are eligible to register as a chiropractor with the General Chiropractic Council. (GCC)
Chiropractors are trained to diagnose, treat, manage and prevent disorders of the musculoskeletal system (bones, joints and muscles). They have a specialist interest in neck, back & joint pain.
Chiropractors use a range of techniques to reduce pain, improve function and increase mobility; this can include hands on adjustments of the spine, soft tissue work to muscles including an array of mobilisation, stretching and strengthening techniques.
Chiropractors can treat patients of all ages for a wide range of problems with their spine, joints or muscles. The primary concern is that of the framework of bones & muscles that support the body (the musculoskeletal system). To ensure this musculoskeletal system works as efficiently as possible, chiropractors can play a major part in relieving disorders, and the pain and discomfort that goes with them. These disorders can be the result of accidents, stress, lack of exercise, poor posture, illness and every day wear and tear.
Chiropractors take a ‘holistic’ approach to health and wellbeing. This means that they consider every patient’s symptoms in the context of their full medical history, their lifestyle and personal circumstances before deciding what care and advice should be provide (GCC).
Chiropractic treatment mainly involves safe, often gentle, specific spinal manipulation to free joints in the spine or other areas of the body that are not moving properly. Apart from manipulation, chiropractors may use a variety of techniques including ice, heat, ultrasound, exercise and acupuncture as well as advice about posture and lifestyle.
Although chiropractors are best known for treating back and neck pain, of which there is extensive researched evidence, ensuring chiropractic as an evidenced based primary care profession, patients also consult chiropractors regarding a range of other, related conditions. (British Chiropractic Association)
A Regulated Profession
In common with a range of other healthcare professionals, chiropractors are registered by law under the Chiropractors Act 1994. The profession is regulated in the UK by the General Chiropractic Council (GCC). Chiropractors must renew their registration every year and successfully demonstrate that they have done a minimum number of learning and development hours. This is to ensure chiropractors maintain and increase their knowledge of the subject.
Chiropractic care is included as a treatment option in the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence’s (NICE) guidelines on managing low back pain (www.nice.org/uk/CG88).