Who are Chiropractors?
As spine, muscle, and nervous system experts, chiropractors provide qualified, effective treatment to promote health, alleviate pain and improve your quality of life.
Chiropractors are doctors who advocate on behalf of their patients. We listen, observe and treat. We are an essential part of the health care system. Chiropractors have the ability to order diagnostic images including x-rays and ultrasounds, diagnose a condition, treat, and refer patients to other professionals including medical specialists.
When should I see a Chiropractor?
Chiropractors focus on your musculoskeletal (MSK) system and treat the bones, muscles, cartilage, tendons, ligaments, joints and connective tissues that you use every day. Chiropractors are doctors who can help their patients feel better by seeing the whole person.
Chiropractors commonly treat:
- Low back pain
- Neck pain
- Headaches including migraines
- Whiplash associated challenges
- Shoulder, elbow, wrist and hand pain
- Knee, ankle and foot pain
- Repetitive strain injuries
- TMJ ( jaw) pain
- Work, motor vehicle, and sports-related injuries
- Mechanical disorders and restoration of function
- Also a number of special populations including athletes, pregnant women, seniors, workers and families.
What should I expect?
As spine, muscle and nervous system experts, Chiropractors see the whole person. Everything is interconnected. We listen to our patients: examine their movement and lack of mobility, we talk to them to better understand their pain and we get to the root cause of the pain. We understand how the body is supposed to move and know how to realign it when mobility is reduced.
On your fist visit, the Chiropractic doctor may ask you a series of questions to better understand your current health and specific needs. They may also perform some tests such as an analysis of your movement, test of your reflexes, strength and sensations plus an analysis of your posture. A course of action will be discussed and explained before treatment will occur, and an informed consent process will be carried out.
What are the benefits?
Chiropractors make a tangible difference in people’s lives by helping them restore mobility and giving them back the ability to do the simple things that once were hindered by pain. (e.g. putting on your socks, picking up children, walking, doing up a seatbelt, picking up something off of the floor)
Chiropractic care can:
- Provide relief from headaches
- Provide relief from neck and back pain
- Improve movement and function in your neck, shoulders, back, torso and extremities
- Improve your posture
- Improve range of motion and flexibility
- Correct gait and foot problems
- Lead to enhanced athletic performance
Depending on your circumstances, you may have coverage for chiropractic care.
Private and Group Insurance
Extended health care insurance/benefits provided through individual or workplace group benefits programs usually covers most, if not all costs, for chiropractic treatments (to an annual maximum). Ask your insurance provider or workplace about your policy benefits regarding chiropractic care.
For those without extended health care coverage, however, chiropractic care can be more difficult to access. The Province of Saskatchewan ended coverage for vulnerable populations, including low-income seniors, the working poor and those receiving social assistance, effective June 30, 2017. Ironically, these populations suffer the highest incidence of musculoskeletal problems, including back pain.
Workers Compensation Board (WCB)
The Worker’s Compensation Act, 2013 gives the workers of Saskatchewan the right to choose chiropractic care for injuries that occur while on the job. The WCB does not require you to see a medical doctor first.
A chiropractor can submit assessment information to the WCB for review and to determine if your claim has been accepted. For information on the WCB’s process and benefits, visit the WCB.
Chiropractic treatment has well-documented high patient satisfaction rates among injured workers. Chiropractic is demonstrated to be one of the most clinically and cost-effective methods of treating many work-related injuries.
Saskatchewan Government Insurance (SGI)
If you have been injured in a motor vehicle accident, a chiropractor can be your primary practitioner to manage and treat your rehabilitation and recovery.
In Saskatchewan, chiropractic care is covered for individuals injured in a motor vehicle collision. Where possible, persons injured in a motor vehicle accident should consult a chiropractor as soon as possible. Early diagnosis and treatment of the neck, back, headaches, extremities, or jaw symptoms can lead to quicker recovery.
Click here for more information on SGI’s auto injury claims process.
Department of Veterans Affairs (DVA)
Veterans Affairs Canada offers health care benefits to eligible veterans, including chiropractic coverage. For more information, visit Veterans Affairs Canada.
Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP)
RCMP employees are fully covered for chiropractic care, without preauthorization, within their yearly allowance for acupuncture, chiropractic, massage therapy and physiotherapy. Preauthorization is not required; however, prescription for acupuncture and massage therapy is required. A Provider Claim Form should be completed. More information can be found at www.medavie.bluecross.ca or by calling 1-888-261-4033.
Members of the Canadian Forces can access chiropractic care when prescribed by their attending physician, nurse practitioner or physiotherapist. Service personnel are usually responsible for obtaining pre-authorization for chiropractic services, and typically will be required to pay for services directly, and submit forms to their Medical Officers for reimbursement.
First Nations Non-Insured Health Benefits (FNIHB)
First Nations Non-Insured Health Benefits (FNIHB) clients may be able to obtain chiropractic services through the provincial plan. For current information on Saskatchewan’s policy, contact Health Canada First Nations and Inuit Health Branch at 1-800-667-3515 or (306) 780-8267.
Medavie Blue Cross administers the Federal programs, including Canadian Armed Forces, RCMP, and Veterans Affairs Canada.
Please see more information about chiropractic coverage for federal government programs here.
Chiropractic Care Changes Pain
Persistent back pain, neck pain, migraines and headaches force you to give up things you love doing. Truth is, pain changes everything. Fact is, chiropractic care can change pain because your chiropractor is a spine, muscle and nervous system expert trained to diagnose the cause of your pain, recommend treatment options to relieve that pain, and help you prevent it from coming back. Click here for video