Certain expenses as we go through life become unavoidable like housing, clothing, medical, and everybody’s favorite, taxes. These expenses, especially medical, often only continue to grow as people age. In fact, many people in retirement budget to meet their maximum out of pocket for their medical insurance every year of their retirement. On average most American couples plan on spending nearly $300,000 in medical expenses alone throughout their retirement! This doesn’t factor in any medical expenses previously spent prior to retirement either. Many people know that the best way to mitigate these costs is to take care of your body throughout your lifetime, but they often forget the major benefits of chiropractic care along the way. With this in mind, we wanted to compare chiropractic vs medical costs to help people quantify the benefits of seeing a chiropractor!
A TYPICAL MEDICAL VISIT FOR A COMMON INJURY
Let’s take this common scenario under consideration. Imagine preparing your lawn and garden for spring in Colorado. After a weekend of pulling weeds, mowing the yard, lugging the hose around for the first time of the season you’re tired and sore. After standing, walking, and kneeling all day you’re tired and ready to call it quits for the day but you’re in pain and can’t get any rest. Little did you know, during the day when you tossed that bag of mulch over your shoulder or you stumbled over your garden hose, you injured your back. Fast forward a couple of weeks and the pain still won’t go away no matter how much over-the-counter medication you take. This means a call to your regular doctor and an office visit for a check-up and diagnosis.
This initial doctor visit can cost between $60 and $300 depending on the severity of your pain, the specialty of your doctor, and your insurance. The doctor notes that you’ve probably “strained” your back from working in the yard. They recommend you “take it easy” for a few days and in the meantime, take a prescription medication for your pain and to help you sleep at night. This prescription likely costs another $20-$100 depending on your insurance and the prescribed medication. This sounds like a pretty routine appointment for millions of Americans. The problem lies in the fact that in this example, the doctor is treating the symptom (pain) and not resolving the problem (a structural alignment issue in the spine).
Although the doctor means well, this scenario often leaves patients back in pain after you’ve taken all of your pills. You’re left with the decision of going back to the same doctor and paying for another visit, living with the pain, or going to see a specialist where costs on average start around $200 and can climb quickly. At this point, the initial issue of the spine being out of alignment has had time to develop into a more severe problem. The muscles have been tense from the pain and there is likely swelling and a restriction of the nerves in the spine. The ongoing pain begins impacting your daily life and after putting off seeing a specialist, now your pain is not manageable and you find yourself having conversations with your doctor or specialist about being a candidate for spinal surgery (average cost in the United States is about $14,000).
A TYPICAL CHIROPRACTOR VISIT FOR THE SAME INJURY
If you’re feeling like that escalated quickly, imagine how those patients feel! We see patients looking for “2nd opinions” often after being told they may need spinal surgery. Fortunately, our expert team is often able to provide relief and correct the underlying issue through chiropractic care even at these later stages. However, the costs incurred to that point still add up and leave patients feeling helpless and frustrated by their lack of improvement. Imagine instead with the above scenario that the patient chose to visit a chiropractor after the initial soreness developed. The average cost to see a chiropractor can be between $50-$100 depending on the chiropractor, insurance, and the length of the visit.
A skilled Chiropractor can correct the alignment of the spine and relax the muscles around the afflicted area. When done quickly after the initial injury the body has not yet adjusted to the improper spinal alignment. This means that patients not only get quick relief from their pain, they often only need one or two visits to correct the underlying problem before it becomes a larger issue. This may seem unrealistic for patients who don’t see chiropractors regularly, however, our patients have countless stories of similar scenarios.
CHIROPRACTIC VS MEDICAL BENEFITS OVER TIME
The benefits of chiropractic vs medical costs only increase over time. Chiropractic offers many benefits as a preventative treatment option as well as a reactive treatment to an injury. Patients who regularly visit a chiropractor have better digestion, better sleep, and better mobility throughout every stage of life. Not coincidentally, these same areas represent leading reasons for patients to seek medical attention throughout their life. Furthermore, as regular chiropractic patients age, they experience a significantly increased quality of life for longer periods than their counterparts. This can be attributed because chiropractic care unlocks the body’s potential to heal itself and maintain itself more efficiently.
Contact us to schedule your appointment today and don’t forget we also offer massages! Our doctors, massage therapists, and staff are dedicated to ensuring you receive the holistic treatment you need! If you’d like to learn more about chiropractic care in Longmont or Erie or have questions about what to expect during your first chiropractor visit in Erie or Longmont, call our office today at 303-828-3000 or 303-772-1950!