Day 20: I am Thankful for Chiropractic Medicine

Even though I wasn’t feeling particularly horrible, I decided to go see my chiropractor this week.

Generally, I wait until I have a problem (can’t turn my neck, incredible pain in my hip, severe lower back pain — all three at once, sometimes) to schedule a visit with her. By then I’m usually crying on the phone. “Don’t you have anything for today?”

Today, I walked in, all straight and upright, told her I felt fine, and I was just in for a tuneup. She gave me an adjustment, and I went back to my day feeling very good. She said she was proud of me for coming in *before* I had a problem. I said, You’re welcome.

The first chiropractor I ever met was my uncle, my mother’s younger brother. I had never even heard of chiropractic before he decided to attend a chiropractic college. He met and married his wife — also a chiropractor and now all-around alternative medicine guru — while there.

Having chiropractors, doctors (okay, a D.O. and a Ph.D), and pharmacists all in the same family makes for some interesting holiday get-togethers. But that is a post for a different day!

Anyhoo, I don’t remember when I got my first chiropractic adjustment, but I have been getting them somewhat regularly since I started having babies. I had horrid sciatic pain with Gabriel and Kate; chiropractors made it possible to sleep. I sprained my back at one point in the summer of 2009 — that was fun — and saw a chiropractor for that. I found yet another chiropractor when I was pregnant with M, and I still see her — she’s who I saw today.

The only reason I’ve seen a series of chiros is because I base my needs on convenience. They have all been wonderful, but at one time or another I moved on to go to a chiro closer to my home or work, depending on the situation.

Going to my current chiropractor is like a combination of massage and counseling. She asks about the children, I give her the unvarnished version of being a WOTHM, she usually laughs. If I have any special aches, she advises me on good stretches. She’s very sweet, yet direct and effective. I would recommend her to anyone looking for a good chiropractor. (Seriously, leave me a comment here or DM me on Twitter if you want. She has offices in Shadyside and in Upper St. Claire.)

If you have any back issues, and you’ve never seen a chiropractor, you should look into it. It’s true, I’m a little skeptical of chiros who tout “alternative medicine” as being able to cure all ills, or those who want you to buy wholesale into a steady intake of specialty (and expensive) supplements. But if they suggest something, and can take, “No, thank you” for an answer, there’s no reason not to continue seeing them. Most of the chiropractors I have seen are much more focused on physical therapy and keeping me in line so I can pursue the activities I want without discomfort (keeping up with my children, exercise, and so on).

Aside: Do you know what they call alternative medicine that works? Medicine.

What alternatives are you thankful for when it comes to healthcare?