Only 8-10% of People See A Chiropractor

Saturday, November 16th, 2013

“Low back pain treatment initiated with a doctor of chiropractic (DC) saves 40 percent on health care costs when compared with care initiated through a medical doctor (MD), according to a study that analyzed data from 85,000 Blue Cross Blue Shield (BCBS) beneficiaries in Tennessee over a two-year span. The study population had open access to MDs and DCs through self-referral, and there were no limits applied to the number of MD/DC visits allowed and no differences in co-pays. Researchers estimated that allowing DC-initiated episodes of care would have led to an annual cost savings of $2.3 million for BCBS of Tennessee. They also concluded that insurance companies that restrict access to chiropractic care for low back pain treatment may inadvertently pay more for care than they would if they removed such restrictions.”
– Liliedahl et al (2010), Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics

Are you aware that only 8-11% of the general population utilize chiropractic care. It’s my opinion that it’s time for those that don’t know anything about chiropractic to start educating themselves on it. People have been taught very effectively that chiropractors, in general, are crazy and are going to hurt them. At the very least, they’ve been taught that we are untrained hacks playing doctor and that we wonder around bumping into walls in our off-time. This could not be a more ignorant portrayal. There ARE some crazy chiros out there but there are also some crazy medical doctors too. There are crazy sales people and crazy this and that. It’s a fact of life in every profession and it’s a portrayal that good, responsible, and effective chiropractors have to work through almost every day.

The REAL fact is, we chiropractors have over 1420 hours of basic sciences, 3400 hours of clinical sciences, and around 2000 hours of chiropractic sciences. In some cases there is nobody more qualified to manage your treatment than a chiropractor!

The simple fact is, 80-90% of our patients just get better if they follow our recommendations. Headches, neck pain, back pain, pain or numbness into limbs, etc. And….they get better naturally instead of through pain pills, muscle relaxers, and anti-inflammatories. We are helping people prevent back surgeries and spinal injections. That’s pretty BIG! It’s a shame when you see someone who has suffered back pain literally for years and years and everyone has told them they’d either have to undergo surgery or learn to live with it. Or….live on pain pills for the rest of their lives. Then, they take a chance on a chiropractor and their world is opened up to them again. It’s powerful. If you witness enough of these cases (and I have seen it hundreds of times) you start to seriously ask yourself why only 8-11% of the population turns to us for these conditions. It just makes no sense to me.

The ones that don’t get better, we refer to medical doctors that have a better shot at helping them so, really, what’s there to lose?

Did you know that a recent independent study showed that, in similar low back conditions, 42.1% of patients that began treatment with an orthopedic surgeon ended up having back surgery while only 1.9% that began their treatment with a chiropractor went on to have surgery? I think that’s a big deal and something people should know.

I’m not saying medical doctors aren’t great. There are guys/gals out there saving lives every day and setting bones for little kids….things I could never see myself doing. Thank God there are people that can and are willing to do those things. My point is, there is a better way in a lot of cases and it’s time to start taking a different approach and a different mentality in regards to chiropractic. Find a good, reputable one in your town. Ask around. Get referrals from your friends. If that first one you call isn’t a match or doesn’t make sense to you, go to the next one. People do NOT have to live in chronic, constant pain.
Jeff S. Williams, D.C.
Amarillo Chiropractor