What to Expect at Your First Chiropractic Visit

Things to know before a first time chiropractor visit.


Chiropractic focuses on restoring, maintaining, and optimizing health via natural, hands-on care. The main purpose of chiropractic treatment is to increase spinal and extremity joint function and range of motion, optimizing health. As a non-invasive, drug-free treatment, it’s a great option for many people. 

Chiropractic care should be at the top of your list of possibilities for addressing your health difficulties because it comes with an abundance of advantages that can help you live a better life. Find answers to all of your questions here to make an informed decision about your health. 

What happens at your first chiropractic appointment?

You will begin with a consultation to address your overall health, a physical exam, medical history, x-rays, and finances, as with other medical appointments. The chiropractor will utilize the information you provide to construct a specific treatment plan, so the first appointment may or may not include an adjustment.

Your chiropractor will provide you with a list of recommendations prior to your first consultation and appointment to ensure you have a successful first appointment. They will request a detailed inventory of your symptoms, prescriptions, diagnosis, and concerns. Your chiropractor, like your doctor, will ask you for detailed family history to better understand your body and treat you correctly. Make a list of any illnesses or conditions that your immediate family members have had in the past. 

The chiropractor will run general tests during the examination, such as blood pressure, pulse, respiration, and reflexes. In addition, specific orthopedic and neurological examinations allow further examination of a range of motion, muscle tone and strength, and neurological integrity. Further chiropractic examinations, such as having the patient move in a specific way, posture analysis, or assessing the motion of the affected body part, may be required to identify the affected area.

If your chiropractor accepts insurance, bring your insurance card with you. Then, arrive a few minutes early for your appointment to complete any necessary papers. The chiropractor will make a plan based on the information ascertained from the visit to start treating you at your second treatment. 

What should I wear to my first chiropractic appointment?

Wear loose-fitting, comfy clothing. This will enable the chiropractor to examine you and do any required testing, such as X-rays. If you have to work the day of your appointment, pack an outfit for your appointment for an easier exam and to prevent wrinkles on your work clothes. Essentially, clothes need to be easy to move in and non-restrictive such as workout clothing. Avoid dresses and skirts if at all possible for a more comfortable experience.

Will a chiropractor do an adjustment on the first visit?

Some chiropractors will feel a problem during the initial examination; then, they may offer to perform an adjustment on the first visit. However, usually, chiropractors need to formulate a plan before implementation. In most cases, if you have an adjustment on your first appointment, you may expect a quick and painless treatment. 

To reduce restrictions throughout the spine, the chiropractor may push, pull, or twist a piece of your body. As your joints move,  you might hear a “popping” sound. The pop is nothing to be concerned about because it is a common side effect. Some people claim that this realignment provides immediate relief. Youmay experience immediate relief after your first visit.

What questions should I ask a chiropractor?

As everyone sees a chiropractor for different reasons, you need to plan to ask questions specific to your condition. Once you make the appointment, keep a notebook to write down questions as they come to you. Then, focus on asking questions about techniques, recommendations, references, amount of visits, and how to prevent your condition from worsening. 

Next, find out what the chiropractor’s practice focuses on as many have a specialty such as back and neck. Ask what treatments they perform, such as adjustments and spinal decompression. Athletes or exercise enthusiasts should ask about treatment for sports injuries and nutrition. Also, ask about the approach for specific conditions and if they offer urgent care services for their patients. 

Furthermore, ask if x-rays are needed before the exam and if insurance covers them and any other portion of your therapy. You will also want to know if the chiropractic office offers guarantees or payment plans. Consider asking if they offer free consultations as this may be a viable option. Lastly, ask about the chiropractor’s years in practice and other credentials. Make sure they offer hours you will be able to work into your schedule.  

What questions do chiropractors ask?

Chiropractors should always start by asking about your condition, pain, and medical history. Expect questions focused on when your pain started, where it’s located, and the type of pain. They will also want to know if the pain is acute or chronic and if it worsens with any movements or activities. You can also expect them to ask questions about your eating and drinking habits along with smoking and alcohol intact as they often focus on whole-body health and nutrition.

Next, they will ask about limits in movement and range of motion. Other questions may pertain to muscle tone, strength, and neural tissues. Furthermore, they may ask questions that provide more insight into your health to determine a better treatment. These can include questions on where you think your health will be in several years to determine your level of commitment to treatment. Another would be what stressors affect your life. 

Does it hurt to get adjusted by a chiropractor?

Chiropractic adjustments rarely hurt when done appropriately for the individual ailment being treated. However, the procedure can make the patient feel a little unpleasant and sore after a therapy session or provide them immediate relief. In addition, following a chiropractic adjustment treatment, the body may experience a warm or tingling sensation. 

Treatments are generally painless, but you may feel sore afterward, comparable to after a workout. On the other hand, the muscles will adjust and loosen up over time. Chiropractors can adjust the head, jaws, shoulders, elbows, wrists, hips, pelvis, knees, and ankles, among other parts of the body.

If you go to the chiropractor with back pain or another type of discomfort, the adjustments may hurt or make the pain worse if the area is sensitive. However, this will be brief, and you should feel relieved fairly quickly. The discomfort of an adjustment is usually much less than the agony of a back or neck injury or the pain of failing to repair a spinal misalignment.

You may hear a popping sound during treatment, which is quite normal. Most adjustments require you to lay down on a movable drop table when needed. The first few appointments will take longer since more body parts will require treatment. Treatments will last between one and four weeks and may be repeated many times per week.

What does chiropractic adjustment feel like?

The chiropractor will manipulate bones and joints to establish proper function while pushing on certain places. Your bones should not move much during the procedure but rather feel like pressure that dissipates when the adjustment is completed. It’s not your bones if you hear popping, cracking, or crunching sounds from the escape of gasses in joint gaps. 

After treatments in the following days, you may experience mild soreness or aches but not pain. However, if you feel aches and pains more than you would from a strenuous workout, call the chiropractic office and schedule an appointment. Also, the type of treatment and the treatment location can change how a patient feels after the session.

Why Choose Portland Wellness Care for chiropractic services?

To help relieve pain and improve body function, Portland Wellness Care employs western and eastern therapies. We also have several medical specialists on staff, including a chiropractor, who can help with various problems. When you visit our clinic, you will get a treatment plan specifically suited to your needs and circumstances. To help you feel better, we provide same-day appointments and walk-ins. We can also help you live a more joyful life by encouraging your body to operate properly, from medical massage therapy to sports medicine and beyond.


The concept behind chiropractic therapy is that the interaction between the structure and function of the body impacts health. The spinal cord, which connects a large part of the peripheral nervous system to the brain and serves as the main support for our bodies, is protected by the spine. Even a minor spinal injury or muscle abuse can significantly affect a person’s strength, sensibility, and performance. 

Chiropractic treatments can provide instant relief for many patients, while others with different symptoms and conditions may need more treatment for relief. We are here to help you on your road to recovery with a full team ready to treat your conditions. To schedule a chiropractic visit, call Portland Wellness Care now.


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Portland Wellness Care offers free consultations for patients who have questions, such as: What is the best treatment plan for me? What services will help me most? What the out-of-pocket costs might I incurred? How long will my treatment plan last?
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