What does my new sign say about me?

New sign1

I recently put up this new sign at the office. It has been in the making for the past six months. The delay in actually putting it up … is me! You see, I feel conflicted about it. Here’s why:

For most of my career as a chiropractor, I utilized therapies that were added in for various reasons. Therapies to relax, rehabilitate, or help the patient “feel” better. I also accepted insurances, primarily, because I didn’t think that people would pay for care out of pocket. About 10 years ago, I went cold turkey and stopped offering therapies, and no longer accepted insurance. This allowed me to focus on what Chiropractic is about, that is, locating and correcting vertebral subluxations in order to allow the body to work better.

I believe that I can do the most good for a person by offering them what I do best, which is the determination of whether that person has a subluxation and then correcting it. After much consideration, I realize that most people are driven to a chiropractor due to what seems to be bothering them at the time, as opposed to wanting to seek chiropractic care as part of their wellness program (if they even have one).

By putting up a sign that associates Chiropractic with the treatment of “back and pain” (or any condition) in contrast to what I believe to be Chiropractic’s most important message, that chiropractic helps you achieve an optimum level of health by reducing interference to the major communication system of the body, am I confusing people as to the value of Chiropractic?

What do you think?

Whealth (“w” silent as in Whole Foods) Fares Poorly!

Last week’s Wall Street Journal Op/ed article by Whole Foods CEO John Mackey has really caused a stir in the nation regarding his views on health care. Imagine that, someone is talking about staying healthy as opposed to fixing the sick.  I am for helping the sick, but it’s kind of like tough love, i.e. let’s teach you healthy habits so there is less chance for the disease to get you.

Regardless of how you feel about his presentation of the issue and his position as CEO of Whole Foods, I can relate to a lot of the same concerns and ideas that he has expressed.  No matter what the outcome of health care reform, I hope that each person gains a better appreciation for being proactive instead of reactive, especially regarding their health.

Listening to the beat of a Chiropractor

Yesterday, while discussing my views on natural childbirth with someone
very dear to me, I realized that I was becoming agitated – not about my
inability to convince this friend to accept my point of view, rather
how their argument was basically a parroting of years of subtle,
constant, perhaps even subliminal messages that advocate the medical
model of health.  The drumbeat he heard was louder than mine.

What do you expect from Chiropractic?

After being in practice for almost 30 years I am still amazed at two things. First of all, I still love doing what I do – helping people. Second, I continue to spin my wheels when it comes to motivating people to make chiropractic a priority in their journey toward optimum health.  When people are in pain and they have benefited from chiropractic care, the assumption, obviously, is chiropractic was an effective treatment for their pain. This seems logical since many people get relief from their pain while receiving chiropractic care. Most people have been led to believe or EXPECT, from an early age, that we only go to the doctor when we are sick or in pain and only when we “feel” better are we finished with care. When someone is receiving chiropractic care and the chiropractor meets the persons “expectations”… well, they stop coming in. So what do I do?  Stop meeting their expectations?  Not exactly.

Taking Responsibility

Just the other day, I saw an ad by a chiropractor that gave advice on the benefits of stretching leg muscles. I am sure that the intentions of the chiropractor were sincere and meant to be beneficial.  My only issue with this kind of advertisement is that it does very little to address the uniqueness of chiropractic.There are plenty of health care providers as well as exercise enthusiasts who address the benefits of exercise.  What is different about the chiropractic perspective that would encourage people to visit the chiropractor?   If we chiropractors are not discussing our unique approach to health, then we are probably destined to be in the company of the transistor radio, cassette tapes, and other obsolete items of a bygone era.