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Stages of Care

The typical patient will encounter 3 stages of care. The first stage focuses of symptomatic relief such as reduction of pain and other discomforts. The following stage addresses tissue healing and function normalisation. The final stage consists of periodic spinal care to prevent the formation of new injuries, minimise future flare-ups of old injuries, and prevent degenerative spinal processes from occurring.

1. Relief Care

Relief care is the first stage of care for most patients. The primary goal during this initial stage is to provide the individual with symptomatic relief. Care focuses on those techniques and therapies which most quickly and effectively reduce pain and other discomforts. This will allow the majority of individuals to continue their activities of daily living. Patients are generally recommended to ” take it easy ” but are encouraged to stay mobile and functional so long as there is no risk of further injury or tissue damage. Therapies that reduce inflammation and muscle spasm are also used during this stage when present.

2. Corrective Care

The second stage of care consists of correcting the problems which caused and contributed to the condition and healing and rehabilitating the injured tissues. Unless these events take place, a favourable outcome is unlikely and future reoccurrances of the problem are likely. It is extremely important that the patient complies with, and follows the instruction given by the Chiropractor during this stage of care. Tissues and structures that are not fully healed and rehabilitated may be prone to future problems. Sticking to appointments, complying with home exercises and instruction, and following all other recommendations will help ensure this occurs. Patients should also be aware that once pain and discomfort have subsided, tissue healing and functional correction, in many cases is still incomplete, and will often require additional care.

3. Wellness Care

Once the spinal tissues are healed, and spinal biomechanics have noramlised, the patient will be recommended to continue with periodic spinal checkups. For some this may mean once a month, or it may be more frequent depending on the individual. Chiropractic spinal checkups provide similar benefits to the spine that dental checkups provide to the teeth. Namely, catching minor problems and disturbances before they have the opportunity to cause pain, discomfort and irreversible tissue changes. The same as with tooth cavities and heart attacks, irreversible tissue damage has generally occurred before the symptoms of spinal pain and discomfort become apparent.

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