Frequently Asked Questions

Considering alternative health and treatment options often comes with a variety of questions. Below we try to answer as many of these for you as we can.

 What are some of the educational requirements for Massage Therapists?
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Registered Massage Therapists (RMTs) in BC have over 3,000 hours of education and are governed by the College of Massage Therapists of BC. RMTs are required to undergo continuing education in order to maintain their registration with the college.

 What is Massage Therapy commonly used to treat?
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Massage therapy is an effective treatment for individuals wanting natural pain and stress management.

 How does Massage Therapy work?
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The primary physiological effects of massage therapy include increasing circulation through the tissue, increasing range of motion, decreasing pain and stretching tight muscles.

 What is Massage Therapy
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Massage therapy is the direct hands-on manipulation of the soft tissues and joints of the body. The soft tissue includes skin, muscle, tendons fascia, ligaments and joint capsules.

 What is an ART® treatment?
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Every ART® session is a combination of examination and treatment. The ART® provider uses his or her hands to evaluate the texture, tightness and movement of muscles, fascia, tendons, ligaments and nerves. Abnormal tissues are treated by combining precisely directed tension with very specific patient movements.

These treatment protocols – over 500 specific moves – are unique to ART®. They allow providers to identify and correct the specific problems that are affecting each individual patient.

 How do overuse conditions occur?
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Over-used muscles (and other soft tissues) change in three important ways:

  1. Acute conditions (pulls, tears, collisions, etc.)
  2. Accumulation of small tears (micro-trauma)
  3. Not getting enough oxygen (hypoxia)

Each of these factors can cause your body to produce tough, dense scar tissue in the affected area. This scar tissue binds up and ties down tissues that need to move freely. As scar tissue builds up, muscles become shorter and weaker, tension on tendons causes tendonitis, and nerves can become trapped. This can cause reduced range of motion, loss of strength, and pain. If a nerve is trapped you may also feel tingling, numbness, and weakness.

 What is the Active Release Technique®
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ART® is a patented, state-of-the-art soft tissue system that treats problems with muscles, tendons, ligaments, fascia and nerves. This technique is commonly used to treat conditions that develop as a result of overused muscles, including:

  • Shin splints
  • Carpal tunnel syndrome
  • Plantar fasciitis
  • Shoulder pain
  • Knee problems
  • Tennis elbow
  • Sciatica
  • Sprains and strains
  • Headaches
  • TMJ (jaw joint) irritation
 What alternatives do chiropractors offer to spinal manipulation?
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Some patients are uncomfortable with spinal manipulation. If this is the case, gentler, joint mobilization is often performed to help decrease any stiffness and misalignment found.

Active Release Techniques® is also an excellent alternative and/or conjunctive therapy to chiropractic manipulation.

 Once you see a chiropractor, do you have to go for the rest of your life?
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No. Patients who have healthy diets, exercise regularly, and perform recommended stretches are often able to go for long periods of time without any chiropractic care. When the same symptoms start lingering, it is recommended that you return to your chiropractor before the problem returns again. Catching early signs of discomfort often means that very few treatments are required to restore your body.

Some people who perform repetitive actions during their work or leisure activities may find that maintenance care can help with stiffness, aches and pains from their daily activities. I leave the frequency of maintenance care at the discretion of the patient, who is generally able to recognize the signs that they should be adjusted.

 Do insurance plans cover chiropractic care?
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The majority of all insured Canadian workers have some coverage for chiropractic services in their extended health care plans. Chiropractic is partially covered by MSP for those who are on premium assistance.

 Do I need a referral from my family doctor to see a chiropractor?
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No. As chiropractors are considered primary health care professionals, patients are able to consult them directly. In some cases, chiropractors do refer patients to medical doctors and receive referrals from medical doctors.

 Is it bad to “crack” your back or neck a lot?
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Yes. This question is frequently asked because people associate the “cracking” or “popping” of one’s back or neck with a chiropractic adjustment. The two are not the same thing. If a person has a desire to “crack” his/her neck or back it is often because one area of their spine is fixated or jammed. This causes another area to move too much and “pop”, sometimes by itself. It’s the fixated or jammed area that needs to be specifically adjusted by a chiropractor. When you “crack” your back you may be relieving the tension for a little while, but it will generally come back. That is because you are not adjusting the fixated segment.