Since its inception, chiropractic has been the subject of many myths. Even now, with a growing body of research proving its effectiveness, the profession is often misunderstood by the general public.
One of the biggest misconceptions is that chiropractic schools don’t deliver the same level of education as medical schools. This couldn’t be farther from the truth. Below are five common myths about chiropractic education—and the truth behind them.
Myth #1: Chiropractors aren’t real doctors.
Just like other licensed doctors, chiropractors are legitimate medical professionals. Chiropractic schools grant a doctorate of chiropractic (D.C.), which qualifies graduates to serve as health care providers in every U.S. state as well as dozens of countries around the world. Chiropractors are also governed by a licensing board, which gives them the right to legally practice chiropractic techniques.
Yes, absolutely, your background in physical therapy will help you in your journey toward becoming a chiropractor. Whether you’re a licensed physical therapist or a PT student, the knowledge that you already have will complement the new information you’ll learn. Plus, the courses that you already completed may meet chiropractic school prerequisites. The fact that you want to advance your education to help others improve their health makes you a great candidate for chiropractic school. By knowing the similarities and differences between the two professions, you can make an educated decision regarding the profession that’s best for you.
Being a student at a chiropractic college can seem like a juggling act on its own. When you mix in family, work, social activities, eating, sleeping and other commitments, completing years of postgraduate education might look like a feat for an organizational guru. The truth is that it’s possible to receive an education and have a life. When you understand the time commitment required of you at chiropractic school, you’ll be better prepared to make the necessary adjustments to your routine.
Sample Chiropractic College Schedule
To earn a Doctorate of Chiropractic degree, you’ll complete about eight months of classroom work per year for almost three and a half years as a full-time student. Examples of classes that you’ll complete cover topics such as:
One of the most important decisions that a chiropractic graduate may face is whether to open a private practice or work as an associate in a clinic. While there isn’t a simple one-size-fits-all solution, there is good news. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that between 2014 and 2024, employment for chiropractors will grow by 17 percent, which is much faster than average thanks to the growing number of patients seeking complementary health care. This means that whichever route you choose, you’ll likely be successful. By knowing what to consider when making this important decision, you’ll pursue your professional objectives with greater confidence.
Career Options for Doctor of Chiropractic Graduates
Working as an Associate
When you work as an associate in a health-care setting, you’re a non-owner employee. Today, chiropractors have the opportunity to associate in a chiropractic practice, a multi-disciplinary clinic, a hospital, or a corporate clinic. While you have some autonomy in regards to patient treatment, you’re not your own boss, nor do you bear the responsibilities of ownership. However, you may gain the opportunity to purchase an ownership interest in the practice.
As you work toward becoming a chiropractor, some peers may develop a particular focus or interest in a specialization, such as pediatric chiropractic. If you haven’t chosen a specialty or focus, don’t panic. You do not have to choose one to earn a doctor of chiropractic degree. After having a solid foundation in chiropractic care and holistic health, many students at Palmer College of Chiropractic pursue a postgraduate program in a field of interest. By knowing about the specializations available, you can determine if a post-graduate program meets your professional aspirations.
Why Choose a Specialization?
The best reason to pursue a focus or specialization after completing your graduate studies is that you have a passion for a particular area of chiropractic treatment. Continuing your formal education advances your knowledge, putting you at the forefront of your field.
Whether you become an associate in a clinic or open your own practice, you have to set yourself apart from the competition. Earning a certification or diplomate status does just that. If an individual seeks chiropractic care because of a sports-related injury, for example, this patient is more likely to seek the services of a certified chiropractic sports physician than a traditional chiropractor. This competitive edge gives you the opportunity to focus on what you love the most about providing chiropractic care. Continue reading →
In 2011, the National Institutes of Health reported that 76 million individuals in the United States live with chronic pain. Of the adults who have pain, over 60 percent have had it for over a year. The most common types of pain, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are neck pain, lower back pain, and severe headaches or migraines. When patients visit traditional physicians about their pain, there is a good chance they’ll receive a prescription for non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) or opioids, or triptans for headaches. While these solutions might bring some relief, they’re not the only option available. Many find that chiropractic care, paired with exercise and other lifestyle adjustments, help treat the underlying cause of pain and allow the body to heal.
Possible Effects of Prescription Painkillers
Exploring natural options for pain management, such as chiropractic techniques, is a worthwhile pursuit, as prescription drugs pose the risk of dangerous side effects. The Cleveland Clinic, for example, states that painkillers decrease pain perception. This is troublesome because the body depends on pain signals to alert you to ailments and injuries. Other side effects related to pain medication include:
With allergy season in full swing, many people are stocking up on antihistamines and other medications to help them endure the onslaught of symptoms: sneezing, itching, watery eyes and stuffy noses.
In developed countries, allergies are the most common cause of chronic illness—and they’re on the rise. As many as 40 percent of the world’s people suffer from at least one allergic condition, and in some countries allergies have increased by as much as 50 percent over the past decade.
An estimated 15 percent of U.S. adults received chiropractic care in 2015, compared to only 8 percent in 2012. Nearly seven in 10 adults believe it’s effective for treating back and neck pain, and more than 50 percent have visited a chiropractor themselves.
Still, many patients are unsure about chiropractic care until they’ve tried it. As a practicing doctor of chiropractic, it will be up to you to answer their questions. Here are some of the most common inquiries you’ll encounter:
Jess Caruso was about to start her senior year as a psychology major when a drunk driver hit her head-on.
Severe headaches plagued her for the next several years. Physical therapy made little difference in the pain that was ruining her life. Prescription painkillers and muscle relaxers left her addicted and sick.
Then one day she went to the gym, where a chiropractor was performing spinal screenings.
Hi, I’m Dr. Dustin Glass. I have the privilege of working with USA volleyball men’s and women’s indoor volleyball teams. I also work with LA KISS of the Arena Football League and the Anaheim Ducks of the National Hockey League. I’m a chiropractor, I change lives, what do you do.
With the Olympics coming up and the teams getting ready and getting back together it’s exciting times and to be able to go into the training facilities and get these athletes ready, knowing the athletes, knowing what I’ve done for them chiropractically. There is something that feels really special, being a part of that team. I feel that Palmer has given me that opportunity and I’m so thankful for that opportunity and they’ve guided me throughout my career and I know throughout the rest of my career Palmer will play a huge role in everything that I do and for that I’m thankful.