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I have neck pain- Do I have to have an adjustment?

Neck Pain

In many cases, people think that when they go to the chiropractor that they HAVE to get an adjustment, which is not true. Sure, some chiropractors only adjust and may talk you into having one even though you don’t want it, but that is not the case for all chiropractors, especially at South End Spine and Sports. 

While the adjustment is an effective treatment method for some patients, it is not for all patients and some do not feel comfortable with them, particularly neck adjustments. This is normal and completely okay. Not all patients are the same and every patient has a different problem, so why treat all problems the same with the same methods? 

*What are the other methods to treat neck pain if I don’t get an adjustment?*

An alternative to an adjustment is called a joint mobilization. These are more gentile techniques directed to the injured joint with the same goal in mind of increasing joint motion and decreasing pain. The joint is gently glided or “mobilized” within a comfortable range of motion. Research has actually shown that neck mobilizations are just as effective as manipulation when attempting to reduce pain and improve range of motion of the neck.

Another alternative to an adjustment is to treat the muscles of the neck through techniques such as Active release techniques and myofascial release. Sometimes neck pain doesn’t originate from the joint, rather the pain and tightness is stemming from a dysfunctional muscle. Treating the muscles is a highly effective way to reduce pain and improve motion of the neck safety and gently, and works great when paired with joint mobilizations.

At South End Spine and Sports, our chiropractors’ main goal is to get you better. If that means treating only the muscle or doing more gentile techniques to the joints because of bad experiences in the past with a different chiropractor, then that is what will be done. Our Physiotherapists are also well trained in joint mobilizations and manipulative therapy, as well as treatment techniques aimed towards the muscles. So we’ve got your back (and neck ) 

The mentioned above are just a few ways to treat a painful neck without manipulation. The best thing to do if you end up going to a chiropractor for neck pain is to voice your concerns with adjustments and that you do not feel comfortable with them. Hopefully he/she will listen and understand your concerns and find other methods of treatment. 

If you have questions about what a adjustment is, adjustment vs. Mobilization or any other question about treatment techniques, please do not hesitate to ask us at Spine and Sports and we can clarify any questions you may have!


William Powls, Chiropractor


Neck Pain Vernon