History of Chiropractic Care


San Mateo Chiropractor David J. Lewis, DCHistory of Chiropractic Care

The history of chiropractic care began in 1895, when Iowan Daniel David Palmer pioneered the practice. Harvey Lillard, a janitor who suffered from partial hearing loss, was Palmer’s first patient. After Palmer performed the very first chiropractic adjustment on Lillard, the janitor reported an improvement in hearing. Two years later, Palmer opened the world’s first school of chiropractic care.

Early methods of chiropractic care were similar to osteopathy, an alternative form of medicine that emphasizes the relationship between the body’s structure and function. Critics at the time accused D.D. Palmer and others of practicing medicine without a formal license, resulting in the arrest and jailing of many early practitioners.

In 1906, D.D. Palmer passed management of the Palmer School of Chiropractic to his son, B.J. Palmer. The younger Palmer introduced new forms of technology to the practice, including X-rays. A close colleague, Dr. Solon Langworthy, composed the first book about chiropractic care, ‘Modernized Chiropractic,’ that same year.

In the following years, the profession became intensely divided. Some practitioners combined spinal adjustments with other medical treatments, while others relied solely on adjustments to treat patients. The practice has also been at odds with mainstream medicine since its inception. In 1975, the American Medical Association deemed the practice ‘unscientific,’ but since then, chiropractic care has gained more acceptance among health plans and medical professionals in the United States and is widely recognized as a legitimate medical practice.

Today, the practice is used to treat various neuromusculoskeletal ailments, including those that affect the neck, joints, back and legs. Chiropractic physicians such as Dr. David J Lewis from San Mateo, CA.   offer patients diagnostic, therapeutic, and rehabilitative care to comprehensively treat symptoms.

The practice is now more popular than ever before. Every year, nearly eight percent of the American population seeks care from the country’s 60,000 chiropractors. More than 35 percent of these patients visit a chiropractor or other practitioner for relief of back pain, and nearly 20 percent seek relief from neck pain. A  chiropractor may also treat patients for headaches, repetitive strains, arthritis, injuries caused by motor vehicle accidents and sports injuries.

According to the Gallup Organization, 90 percent of people that undergo chiropractic treatments feel that the treatment is effective. The Western Journal of Medicine asserts that patients who use chiropractic care are three times more satisfied with that treatment than patients who only use the services of a family practice physicians. These statistics are a testament to how far the practice has come since the days of D.D. Palmer.  Also, for fast automated scheduling try our new scheduler.

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