Going to a chiropractor for the first time can feel a little intimidating. You may have heard of chiropractic adjustments, but you may not be exactly sure what that means. At your first appointment, the chiropractor will most likely spend a significant amount of time discussing your health history and performing a through physical exam. X-rays and other testing may also be performed at a first appointment to give the chiropractor more information before recommending a course of treatment.
The chiropractic adjustment will probably occur on a special table. It is padded for your comfort. The chiropractor will have you get into certain positions on the table and then use his or her hands to manipulate your joints with sudden, controlled force. This causes your joints to move, which can create a cracking or popping noise. You will probably receive other therapies besides the chiropractic adjustment, depending on your unique needs and course of treatment. These may include special stretches, electrical stimulation, massage therapy, icing the affected area, or applying heat. Your chiropractor may also discuss lifestyle changes, like exercise and weight loss, which could positively affect your body’s well-being.
Once you are finished with your first chiropractic adjustment, you may be wondering how you will feel. It is certainly possible that you will have some localized soreness or pain in the areas that were adjusted. Other side effects may be headache or fatigue. Many people feel very good after adjustments, so until you go through it yourself, you may not know how your body will react. You may also receive instructions for exercises or stretches that you can do at home to further help your body and reduce pain.