Many people suffer from back pain at some point in their lives, and while many may naturally think that a chiropractor is the first choice for treatment, some are unsure of their insurance guidelines for seeing one. Therefore, despite having a common knowledge that a chiropractic practitioner is best suited to diagnose and treat the musculoskeletal condition, many patients first seek treatment from their primary care doctor, which can lead to the prescription of painkillers and muscle relaxers that may do more harm than good. There are at least three reasons a patient suffering from back pain or another musculoskeletal condition should see a chiropractor before their primary care doctor.

  1. Recognition as Primary Care Providers

    While most insurance policies require that patients seek referrals from primary care physicians before seeking the aid of a specialist, what many don’t realize is that chiropractors are recognized across the country as primary care providers. Therefore, most chiropractors are trained to diagnose and treat musculoskeletal conditions, meaning that they are licensed as primary care physicians. 
  2. Less Travel Time and Health Risks

    When patients choose to go to their primary care doctor before a chiropractor, they mostly waste time trying to get a referral they likely do not need. Also, patients opting for this path put their health at higher risk by voluntarily sitting in hospital waiting areas, where people seeking treatment for viruses and other infections may create further problems. A chiropractor can diagnose your musculoskeletal condition the same as your primary doctor and without the added health risks.

  3. Holistic Care

    Lastly, chiropractors are specialized in holistic care, meaning that they do not rely on pharmaceuticals or surgery. Instead, a practitioner of chiropractic medicine relies on spinal manipulation, nutrition and physiotherapy, which have all been proven as effective treatments for back pain and musculoskeletal conditions. If a patient chooses to see a primary care doctor before their chiropractor, then they may receive aggressive forms of intervention, like surgery and medication, before they are truly necessary.

Insurance policies can be confusing, leading many patients to make the incorrect assumption that a referral is necessary before seeking treatment from a chiropractor. However, chiropractic treatment is seen and considered as primary care across the country. Therefore, while your pain may seem too great and you may not fully understand holistic care, contact a chiropractor for a consultation first for back pain and other musculoskeletal related problems. Sometimes a holistic approach is all that is required to get you feeling like yourself again.

Source: Chiropractor Glen Burnie, MD, Mid-Atlantic Spinal Rehab and Chiropractic