A few weeks ago I was invited to come to Cooper Chiropractic for an alignment session! Back when I lived in D.C. I had a not-so-pleasant experience with a chiropractor. Long story short: I had a living social massage that came with a free chiropractic session, got sucked into buying a membership, and went for three weeks only to end up in the emergency room because the chiropractor told me I was possibly having a stroke. Fortunately, the ER assured me I was fine and I could stop my sessions.
I was a little nervous walking into Cooper Chiropractic for my first examination. Located conveniently near my office on Meeting Street, I was immediately greeted upon walking in and shown around the facilities.
Dr. Cooper was super friendly and down to earth. He started by giving me an overview of what would happen in the session. I was pleased to hear this office was focused on a holistic natural approach to healing stress that the body incurs from accidents, sports collisions, or just sitting in a desk 8+ hours a day.
For the first 12 minutes, I laid face down and given “electrical muscle stimulation” by a machine that sent electric waves to my muscles. I was nervous by the sounds of the machine but honestly did not feel that much at all. The purpose of this machine is to give alternative healthy options to pain medicines. Dr. Cooper primarily uses it in patients to help repair muscles, ligaments, and tendons.
The next ten minutes was similar to getting a massage. Dr. Cooper’s assistant, Abby, used a percussion massager on my back – it felt like heavy vibrations being pressed against the back. The purpose of this machine is pain relief, increased blood circulation (which helps increase the rate tissues heal), trigger point stimulation and release (good for all those knots and kinks), stimulation of parasympathetic nervous system (anti-adrenalin, relaxing and calming), and to increase joint mobility. A side effect that I immediately noticed was that my back started itching. Apparently histamines are stored in the muscles and the machine released a ton of them that I apparently had stored because I could not stop scratching for a few minutes after!
For the last segment of my session, Dr. Cooper came back into the room and performed an adjustment on me. This part includes what you typically think of when you visit a chiropractor: the back cracking & realignment.