Most don’t know that in the U.S., we spend about $88 billion a year to treat back and neck pain. You can add to that number the cost of lost productivity, estimated at $635 billion per year, due to absenteeism, lost labor, and medical bills as a result of chronic pain. Hyped-up numbers, you might ask? No, those are numbers The Economist magazine reported in its 2022 health policy-focused article “Back to Basics.
So if that’s a big problem, who’s doing something about it? Turns out, it’s today’s doctors of chiropractic whose understanding of the function of the human body’s spine and related parts of the musculoskeletal system is truly making a difference and providing a non-pharmaceutical approach to pain management.
The chiropractic perspective views health as an expression of biological, psychological, and social factors. The profession’s principles value the body’s intrinsic biologic ability or innate tendency to self-regulate and restore and maintain health through compensating homeostatic mechanisms, reparative processes, and adaptive responses to environmental challenges.
The spinal column protects the spinal cord, which is an extension of the brain, and nerves from the spinal cord exit the spinal column and branch out like a delicate web transmitting information back and forth between the central nervous system and the rest of the body.
Because of the close relationship between the spine and the nervous system, abnormal or dysfunctional spinal movement can adversely impact nerve, function affecting the communication between the brain and the body.
This disturbed spinal biomechanics can reduce optimal joint performance, accelerate degeneration and increase the risk of injury, and this may result in pain or other symptoms.
The core focus of chiropractic practice and procedure is to address disturbed joint biomechanics and the associated effects on nerve system function. This is achieved through the skilled procedure termed the spinal adjustment or manipulation.
Chiropractic is an inherently conservative approach to healthcare, and the profession values the intrinsic biologic ability of the body to self-regulate, restore and maintain health. The chiropractic perspective represents a holistic biopsychosocial philosophy of health and embraces a belief in optimizing health through
The chiropractic college curriculum includes comprehensive education in a whole-person approach to patient management. Patient care is individualized and may include
The Council on Chiropractic Education (CCE) is recognized by the U.S. Department of Education for the accreditation of programs and institutions offering the Doctor of Chiropractic degree.
Current accreditation and state licensing standards in the U.S. designate doctors of chiropractic as primary care, portal-of-entry health providers responsible or establishing a diagnosis, determining indications for chiropractic care, and consulting with or referring to other healthcare practitioners when appropriate.
The Council of Chiropractic Education requirements for admission to chiropractic college in the U.S:
Although most chiropractic services are community-based in private offices, interdisciplinary practices are becoming more common. “Interdisciplinary” means chiropractic doctors, medical doctors, physical therapists, and others work together as partners in private practices, occupational health and rehabilitation centers, multidisciplinary corporate health and wellness centers, and with national sports medicine teams.
To review the chiropractic profession and its role in the healthcare marketplace, check out the 2022 report, Chiropractic: A Safe and Affordable Approach to Health.
You can expect a Doctor of Chiropractic degree curriculum to include a minimum of 4,200 clock hours (many chiropractic colleges include more), and require competency in the various categories and courses.
Major areas of focus include:
Career satisfaction depends on many factors – personal preferences, work environment, personality type, and sources of satisfaction. One thing’s for sure, though. The healthcare landscape continues to widen as consumers seek effective, less invasive ways to feel better over their lifetime.
Based on what they do and how they do it, a doctor of chiropractic degree certainly deserves exploration. In 2022, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projected an 11% growth rate for chiropractors from 2021 to 2031. At the same time, annual compensation for chiropractors with established practices is $150,000 per year, according to Salary.com data.
Cleveland University-Kansas City (CUKC) is a nonprofit, private, chiropractic and health sciences university in Overland Park, Kansas, a Kansas City metro suburb. Our mission over our 100+ year history: educate and develop leaders in health promotion.
Our history in chiropractic education began in 1922. Today, CUKC is the only chiropractic college still guided by a founding family member. Nearly 11,000 chiropractors earned their Doctor of Chiropractic degrees through the CUKC College of Chiropractic.