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Is it ok to feel bad after first chiropractic adjustment?

I'm 33 years old male, and I went to my first chiropractic adjustment yesterday for my back pain that was caused by a sports injury. Now, I feel worse. Is it ok to feel bad after first chiropractic adjustment?

13 Answers

Sometimes you feel sore after your adjustment. But you should mention that to your doctor.
It’s very common to be more sore after treatment. I tell patients it’s common to expect that, but the pain should go back down after a day or two.
That is not uncommon, although it is not the case in the majority of visits. It also depends on what treatment was provided and the underlying injury.
Unfortunately, Feeling sore after your first adjustment is common. I tell every new patient who has never been adjusted before that they may feel more soreness and to use an ice pack. If icing doesn’t relieve it over a few hours to call me. There is a possibility that part of the chiropractic treatment exacerbated your condition or worsened it. I would highly recommend to discuss this with your chiropractor, call them if you must.
It is not uncommon to feel worse after the first adjustment. Sometimes it may take 3-5 before you begin to feel results depending on the severity of the condition. Because of muscle and ligament reaction to the adjustments coupled with increased blood flow and the release of lactic acid patients will feel sore, tired and sometimes feverish. Mild exercise such as just walking and lots of water helps.
There is a chiropractic concept that we call retracing. In essence it means that very often in the healing process the body will retrace the original source of an injury or imbalance before the symptoms improve. It is often the case therefore that after the first couple visits you may feel worse.
This should not be the case after a couple/few weeks of treatments. Talk to your chiropractor about what you are feeling. It’s important to communicate and give feedback.

No, but it is common to feel worse after your first adjustment. If you have never had an adjustment in 33 years, then your spine has never moved like it does during an adjustment. Talk to your doctor and let him/her know. Good communication is the foundation of any relationship, especially a doctor/patient relationship.


Dr. Duchon
It can be sore after an adjustment
Perfectly okay! As the chiropractor begins to work on you, your body will undergo many changes and re-structuring. As the body returns to balance, your weight distribution can change, muscle lengths can change, etc. Your body will need some time to truly mount a healing response. If you are not feeling any improvement after 10-20 visits, it may be time to seek a second opinion. This is why it is so vitally important that you select a chiropractor that you feel is right for you. I always recommend one that takes x-rays, analyzes your entire case, and lays out a care plan for you to get fully better and continue to stay that way into the future.
Best of luck with your healing!

You should not. Maybe slight muscle soreness.
Yes, it is normal to feel more soreness the next morning and it may last a couple of days due to the new bio-mechanic of the body (alignment).
Yes, occasionally, patients will get a healing reaction from an adjustment.
Every body responds differently to an adjustment, especially if it the first one in a while. Your body can take a couple of days after the adjustment to fully settle in, at which point you should feel much better. If you continue to feel worse, contact your Chiropractor and discuss why this has happened.