Do You Need X-Rays to Receive Chiropractic Care?

When you come and visit us as a new patient here at McAuliffe Chiropractic Office, one of the first things that we will do during your initial examination is take a full set of x-rays so we can get a full view of your neck and spine before we get to work.

However, not every Doctor of Chiropractic takes x-rays. In fact, sometimes we have new patients who have been to a chiropractor before but who have never gotten full x-rays in the past.

So, why do we always do full x-rays when not every other chiropractor does?

At McAuliffe Chiropractic we pride ourselves on our ability to take, read and analyze chiropractic x-ray studies so that we can give the most individualized and specific care recommendations possible. Taking x-rays before we start manipulating bones and joints will help make sure we are taking care of the patient safely and effectively no matter their current pain levels.

There are some doctors who only take x-rays if the patient is experiencing a large amount of pain, but there can be underlying issues in your spine present even if you aren’t experiencing a high level of pain with.  


When you take x-rays you are able to look much deeper at the health history of the patient.  You can see how an old whiplash injury from years ago has healed and how much it is playing a role in the neck pain that patient has noticed since they have been working at home more. The x-rays help us confirm the findings from the exam and make clinical determinations about how to best adjust the patient. 

This isn’t all thy do either. X-rays show us the posture of the patient while showing us how the whole spine is working together. Getting this type of view on the spine can help us address different health concerns and see which types of issues, injuries or misalignments may be causing other healthcare concerns.

Here’s one of the easiest ways to explain it.


When you go to get your check engine light would you prefer the technician to look at the light and say:

Well, sometimes this means you need a new engine so let me just go ahead and get that started for you it’s going to be $5000, will you be paying cash or credit today?

This is usually no big deal, I’ll just change your oil and if it comes back, don’t worry it is probably a broken light sensor, not a problem. Just bring it back again.

Or would you prefer if your technician popped the hood and used the tools available to figure out the problem and make a diagnosis of the underlying cause of the problem?

You’d probably want to actually get to the bottom of the issue, right? Your health is important. You want as much information as possible before you go all in on big treatments like surgery, or continue to just cover up the problem with pain medication that you have to keep going back for.

X-rays are one of the most important diagnostic tools we use during your examination and we will use them at follow up appointments in the future so we can see how your spine is improving with your care.

Of course, if you have any other questions about x-rays or our examination process, you can always give us a call here at 301-776-0755 or book an appointment right online.

Dr. Terence P. McAuliffe Jr. Family Chiropractor at McAuliffe Chiropractic Office

You Might Also Enjoy...

How Poor Posture Affects Your Health

Here at our Howard County chiropractic office, we talk a lot about posture and work hard to help our patients restore a healthy posture. But why is this so important? And why do we put so much emphasis on good posture? Because good posture = good health.