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Putting the 'care' in healthcare

I couldn’t decide between two titles for this blog. My two options were:

  1. Putting the ‘care’ in ‘healthcare’
  2. How to build a sustainable human body

Either way, here it is:

To paraphrase a recent new patient comment after her 3rd visit:

“…I really enjoy this. Not just feeling better … the whole thing of learning about the body.”

YES!  She gets it.  I responded with (paraphrased):

“Thank you.  I’m glad you’re feeling better. Learning about the body – the how and why things can go wrong and how to steer it back to health – are not only the intellectual bonuses to treatment, they actually improve your outcome.  Those that take the time to understand their injuries and pain, and why we do what we do to help it get better actually get better faster and better than those who don’t.”

When you take the time to care about your body and create routines that nourish, strengthen, mobilize, and relax the body, your body thanks and rewards you with better health.  The only way to create these routines is to first understand what and how to engage in these healthy habits.  For this reason, I often ‘teach’ a lot during your treatment visits (I promise I will be quiet when the moment requires). But, it is up to you to learn.  So, if my teachings fail, please ask for clarification.  If you need motivation, ask for it.  If my lessons are exhausted, ask me to point you in other directions for further progression.

I care quite a bit more than you think about your health. But, I cannot care more than you do about your health.  That’s why being a patient of mine is a partnership. I will facilitate health as long as you seek it out.  This is one reason why I encourage “maintenance” visits throughout the year – it provides a good opportunity to check in with not only the areas of your body that have been previously sore or injured, but also to ensure that the rest of you is functioning the way it should.

Administering the treatment to help you heal is an important part of getting and staying healthy. But, the learning of ‘why’ and ‘how’ to engage in daily activities to keep us healthy is so important to building a sustainable human body for a lifetime.  In my opinion, this is the ‘care’ in my brand of ‘healthcare’.

Once upon a time, I drew ‘stick-figures’ on paper at the end of treatment visits to showcase home exercise advice. Both technology and science have changed this habit. Firstly, scientifically speaking, “stretching” homework is rarely prescribed in my office in isolation, because “mobility” homework is so much more valuable.  So, statically drawn photos representing a ‘stretch position’ cannot represent your homework. Rather, technology allows me to record videos of your exercises, make them available online, and serves you better by representing more accurately what you’re trying to achieve with exercise rehab.  If you’re still not sure where to find these videos, CLICK HERE.

Evolving from stick-figures to videos is one example of how times have changed. Another example is in how we interact within our community. Mass emails, social media posts, tagging friends, likes, and retweets have become the way we communicate with one another. I’m going to change this a bit. Business marketing still demands that I post health and fitness related information to Facebook, Twitter, Google , and LinkedIN. Newsletters and blogs (like this one) are still a valuable tool to keep my community (that’s you!) engaged in the goings-on of my chiropractic practice. But, let me assure you, none of these business tools show you that I care about your health. They’re too impersonal.  But, you are on my mind when I don’t see you for a period of time. I wonder if you’re feeling better or worse. I wonder if my treatment underwhelmed your expectations or helped you get better faster than I would have expected. Simply put, I wonder.  So, from time to time, I might check in with you via email to see what you’re up to and how you’re feeling. You do not have to respond, but I hope you do.  Because I wonder. And, I care.

I’ve always valued the ‘care’ in healthcare. With today’s society trying to be more “social”, and yet actually being less, I’m going to try to be more.

REMINDER: 25 minute visits are good for 1 complaint.  The 40 minute and 55 minute visits are better for multiple complaints, new complaints, or to simply maximize the treatment session.  Unsure what’s right for you?  Just ask me.

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