Frequently Asked Questions in Burnsville

Find the answers below to the most frequently asked questions about chiropractors in Burnsville. Having the answers to these key questions can help you choose the right Burnsville chiropractor for you. If you don't see the answer below to a question you have, reach out to Eagle Trace Spine & Sport at (952) 808-2922 and our team can help!

What is a chiropractor?

A chiropractor is a health care professional focused on the diagnosis and treatment of neuromuscular disorders, with an emphasis on treatment through manual adjustment and/or manipulation of the spine.

Are chiropractors doctors?

Yes. Doctors of chiropractic are educated as primary contact health care providers, with an emphasis on diagnosis and treatment of conditions related to the musculoskeletal system (the muscles, ligaments, and joints of the spine and extremities) and the nerves that supply them.

Doctors of chiropractic are educated in orthopedics, neurology, physiology, human anatomy, clinical diagnosis including laboratory procedures, diagnostic imaging, exercise, nutrition rehabilitation and more. Because chiropractic care includes highly skilled manipulation/adjusting techniques, a significant portion of time is spent in clinical technique training to master these important manipulative procedures.

What type of education and training do chiropractors have?

Educational requirements for doctors of chiropractic are among the most stringent of any of the health care professions. The typical applicant for chiropractic college has already acquired nearly four years of pre-medical undergraduate college education, including courses in biology, inorganic and organic chemistry, physics, psychology, and related lab work.

Once accepted into an accredited chiropractic college, the requirements become even more demanding - four to five academic years of professional study are the standard. In total, the chiropractic college curriculum includes a minimum of 4,200 hours of classroom, laboratory and clinical experience. The course of study is approved by the Council on Chiropractic Education, an accrediting agency that is fully recognized by the U.S. Department of Education.

What does a chiropractor do?

Chiropractic care focuses on the restoration of spinal alignment. There are two basic treatment philosophies. Those who study the Palmer method of chiropractic believe that chiropractic care is the only treatment that patients need for any condition, from the flu to back pain. Other doctors of chiropractic believe that chiropractic care is part of an integrated approach to wellness that includes diet, exercise, and traditional medicine when needed.

Are chiropractors useful?

Mounting evidence proves that chiropractic care is one of the most effective treatments, especially for patients with back pain. Here are just a few of the latest research findings regarding the effectiveness of spinal manipulation.

  • A person who seeks chiropractic treatment after an injury to the lumbar (low back) region of the spine before seeking treatment with an allopathic doctor is much less likely to have spinal surgery.
  • In a study published in The Spine Journal, researchers reviewed 699 studies of spinal manipulation treatments as compared to other types of treatments that included exercise, medication, mobilization, and sham (placebo) treatments. Researchers found that five to ten sessions of spinal manipulation therapy over two to four weeks was just as effective as other treatments, if not more, in the majority of studies. Unlike other treatments in the studies, there were no side effects reported for spinal manipulation.
  • A large-scale consumer survey carried out by Consumer Reports found that chiropractic care outperformed all other treatments for back pain. This includes outperforming traditional prescription medications in managing pain.
  • Researchers from the University of Florida found that patients who received spinal manipulation experienced less pain as a direct result of their treatment.

Chiropractors are a very useful part of a pain management team. Learn more about even more cutting-edge chiropractic research in our other post on the subject.

Does chiropractic work?

In short, yes. Chiropractic care for pain can be a non-invasive treatment option for any of the above injuries. There have been numerous studies that indicate that chiropractic care is a great way to approach many different pain conditions. Neck pain and back pain are the two pain conditions best served by chiropractic care, especially when combined with other treatments.

One study found rapid improvement of neck pain over physical therapy, medications, and surgery alone. This study is notable for its size and the scientific validity of its approach.

Another study looked at successful treatments over a year and found that chiropractic care worked better than physiotherapy and general practitioner care. For lower back pain, the most common pain condition addressed with chiropractic care, there are many different studies that indicate that it works.

One study that focused on military veterans found that chiropractic care decreased pain and improved function better than traditional treatments of lower back pain alone.

Another study found that those patients who used chiropractic care for pain had a 90% reduction in pain over four weeks, much higher than traditional medical care (56%).

Are chiropractors safe?

Chiropractic is widely recognized as one of the safest drug-free, non-invasive therapies available for the treatment of neuromusculoskeletal complaints. Although chiropractic has an excellent safety record, no health treatment is completely free of potential adverse effects. The risks associated with chiropractic, however, are very small.

Many patients feel immediate relief following chiropractic treatment, but some may experience mild soreness, stiffness or aching, just as they do after some forms of exercise. Current research shows that minor discomfort or soreness following spinal manipulation typically fades within 24 hours.

Are there chiropractic adjustment side effects?

Traditional, more interventional, treatments like surgery can have serious side effects that are long-term. With chiropractic care, the side effects, if any, maybe a bit of soreness that is usually gone within a day. Typically, side effects may include minor soreness in the area of treatment.

Mayo Clinic also reports that some patients may experience headache or fatigue following the procedure. Conservative care as a whole-a theory that is at the foundation of chiropractic care-strives to offer treatments such as chiropractic care and other exercises or treatments that have few or no side effects for patients. Then the healthcare team can gauge their effectiveness to manage the pain condition. If little progress is seen, then and only then will a doctor who practices conservative care begin to tap into more traditional treatments.

How many chiropractic sessions do you need?

Good chiropractors do everything in their power to help their patients feel better as fast as possible with as few chiropractic treatments as necessary, ultimately reducing care to an as-needed follow-up plan. They also give advice on how to avoid future problems by evaluating lifestyle activities, ergonomics, posture, orthotics, and/or diet.

How much does a chiropractic care cost?

The cost of care is an important aspect of pain treatments, especially when that treatment is long-term. A claims analysis of all of the fully insured patients with Blue Cross Blue Shield of Tennessee found that patients who initiated care with a doctor of chiropractic rather than an allopathic doctor had 40% lower paid-for costs (the costs that come directly from a patient's pocket).

Further, recent research into chiropractic care: "A recent study of 719 patients who first initiated contact through a Swiss telemedical service found that talking to a doctor of chiropractic first not only saves money but is also as effective as more traditional treatments. Researchers administered a questionnaire to spinal, hip, and shoulder pain patients who called the telemedical service for advice. Of the study participants, 403 saw regular medical doctors and 316 saw chiropractors. Patients seeing medical doctors first had significantly higher medical costs and a significantly lower reduction in pain than those who chose chiropractic pain management."


Yes. Chiropractic care is included in most health insurance plans, including major medical plans, workers' compensation, Medicare, some Medicaid plans, and Blue Cross Blue Shield plans for federal employees, among others. Chiropractic care is also available to active-duty members of the armed forces at more than 60 military bases and is available to veterans at more than 60 major veterans' medical facilities.

What does a chiropractor treat?

Doctors of Chiropractic (DCs) care for patients of all ages, with a variety of health conditions. DCs are especially well known for their expertise in caring for patients with back pain, neck pain and headaches...particularly with their highly skilled manipulations or chiropractic adjustments.

They also care for patients with a wide range of injuries and disorders of the musculoskeletal system, involving the muscles, ligaments, and joints. These painful conditions often involve or impact the nervous system, which can cause referred pain and dysfunction distant to the region of injury. DCs also counsel patients on diet, nutrition, exercise, healthy habits, and occupational and lifestyle modification.

What other conditions can be treated by chiropractic care?

The most common kind of chiropractic treatment is referred to as spinal manipulation therapy (SMT) or a chiropractic adjustment. In this type of work, doctors apply controlled force in a very specific way to restore mobility in the joints. Sometimes the patient will hear a popping noise as the spine is adjusted, but this is no cause for alarm. Small pockets of air trapped in the joints cause this popping noise, similar to what one might hear when cracking the knuckles.

Chiropractic treatment is hands-on, drug-free, and complex. Doctors will take a detailed health history, including family history and details of the current injury if applicable. After taking health history and answering any questions the patient might have, doctors may also recommend X-rays or an MRI to confirm that chiropractic care is appropriate. If a patient is experiencing loss of strength or lack of reflexive response, a chiropractor may refer the patient to a spine surgeon to get more information before beginning treatment. Once all of these steps are complete, treatment can begin.

Chiropractors may also be able to help relieve pain or symptoms related to:

  • Arthritis
  • Asthma
  • Chronic fatigue syndrome
  • Bursitis
  • Fertility issues
  • Ear infection
  • Colic
  • Frequently occurring colds or the flu
  • Gastrointestinal syndromes
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Thoracic outlet syndrome
  • Loss of equilibrium
  • Scoliosis
  • Intervertebral disc syndrome
  • Sciatica
  • Temporomandibular joint disorders
  • Respiratory infection
  • Tendinitis
  • Menstrual disorders (e.g., pre-menstrual syndrome)

Can I get chiropractic care during pregnancy?

Chiropractic care during pregnancy actually can have a lot of benefits for both the mother and baby. As we discussed in our post, chiropractic care during pregnancy can help:

  • Give the baby room to grow and prevent breech presentation
  • Relieve back pain
  • Reduce the time of labor and delivery
  • Bring the mother's body back into alignment after delivery

How does a chiropractor help lower back pain?

Lower back pain is the most common type of back pain in the U.S. There is no single condition that causes pain in the lower back. The compression of the lumbar spine is one of the most common uses of chiropractic care for pain. This compression may occur due to chronically poor posture that results in a C-shaped curve in the lumbar spine. Also known as lordosis, this C-shaped curve can become chronic and painful.

Spinal stenosis another condition that can cause lower back pain. It is due to the narrowing of the spinal column that can occur as a result of age-related gravity, injury, or illness. This narrowing can pinch nerves in the spinal column, causing pain.

Chiropractic care for spinal stenosis and lower back pain focuses on lengthening the spine and bringing space between the vertebrae. This can relieve the pain and pressure on the nerves. In conjunction with exercise, chiropractic care for compression of the lumbar spine can help realign the spine to restore the natural inward curve of the lower back.

How does a chiropractor help neck pain?

The seven vertebrae of the cervical spine are delicate. We often tax these bones with our head-forward posture as we look down at computers and phones all day long. For every inch our head juts forward of our shoulders, eight pounds of additional pressure are exerted on the cervical spine.

Neck fractures and compression can result in extreme, debilitating pain. In addition to using previously discussed chiropractic techniques to relieve compression and pressure in the cervical spine, chiropractic care for neck pain can help patients understand what correct posture looks and feels like, preventing further injury.

How does a chiropractor help sciatica?

Adjusting (or manipulation) of a joint may result in the release of a gas bubble between the joints, which makes a popping sound. The same thing occurs when you "crack" your knuckles. The noise is caused by the change of pressure within the joint, which results in gas bubbles being released. There is usually minimal, if any, discomfort involved.

Why do adjustments sometimes make a popping sound?

Adjusting (or manipulation) of a joint may result in the release of a gas bubble between the joints, which makes a popping sound. The same thing occurs when you "crack" your knuckles. The noise is caused by the change of pressure within the joint, which results in gas bubbles being released. There is usually minimal, if any, discomfort involved.

Are all patients adjusted the same way?

No. Every one is different. Here at Eagle Trace Spine & Sport, everyone receives unique care that the doctor decides is necessary for you to get better.

Is chiropractic treatment appropriate for children?

Yes, children can benefit from chiropractic care. Children are very physically active and experience many types of falls and blows from activities of daily living as well as from participating in sports.

Injuries such as these may cause many symptoms including back and neck pain, stiffness, soreness or discomfort. Chiropractic care is always adapted to the individual patient. It is a highly skilled treatment, and in the case of children, very gentle.

9:00am - 12:30pm
2:00pm - 6:00pm

2:00pm - 6:00pm

9:00am - 12:30pm
2:00pm - 6:00pm

2:00pm - 6:00pm

9:00am - 2:00pm

By Appointment

*Massage Hours May Differ

Eagle Trace Spine & Sport

12002 County Road 11
Burnsville, MN 55337

P: (952) 808-2922
F: (952) 808-2910