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The 3 reasons patients commit (time/money) to care...

After 30 years of active practice and coaching hundreds of Chiropractors over my career, I understand their frustrations. Such as patients who are looking for a "quick-fix" and don't want to commit to our recommendations. They drive us crazy! However, understand that most patients have grown up in and practice, an allopathic health-care model. You have symptoms, then you go to the doctor, and then you stop going to the doctor once the symptoms are gone. Care is based on symptoms not function, or ongoing value.

Patients need to understand that Chiropractic, and caring for their spine, are akin to that of caring for their teeth or even their car. If you have a problem, then fix it before it becomes and bigger problem. More importantly, do PM (preventative maintenance) so that problem or any other problem never happens again. Don't you want your car AND your teeth to look and function as best as possible? The problem is that we can't SEE our spine like we can our teeth or our car. If people wore their spine on their face, they would take better care of it! When you see that bad set of teeth or car loudly smoking down the road, you think, "I'm glad that isn't mine". If only people knew how bad their spines look for real.

Here is what I've learned and seen as to why patients commit, both in the short and long term, to Chiropractic care.

  1. They understand the seriousness of their condition and/or problem- Patients have to know what their problem is and how it's impacting their presenting complaint. You have to be good at communicating and explaining (in layman's terms) what is going on, how it's creating their symptoms, and why it's important they take care of it now before it gets worse. This is where posters, props, reports, digital x-ray, posture pics, etc. are extremely important. Seeing is believing and believing is the first step for your patients wanting to change.

  2. They have to understand how their health and/or problem impact their quality of life- Everyone wants a great quality of life and to be able to freely do what they want to do. We are living longer but we are certainly not living a better quality of life compared to a hundred years ago. Health problems prevent people from living "their best life". They must clearly understand how their problem or lack of health is preventing them from being the best version of themselves or preventing them from doing the things they "want" and "need" to do every day.

  3. Chiropractic has to become an unconscious habit- When is the next time you'll brush your teeth? How about take a shower or work-out? How about pay your bills or jump on Facebook? Habits own us and you are the sum total of your habits. People should be coming into our office because it's "Wednesday" and they get adjusted every Wednesday, NOT because they're in pain. If people leave your office without an appointment or without knowing exactly when they will be adjusted next, Chiropractic is not a habit in their life. When patients are getting adjusted not based on how they feel, but based on better function, you have taught them "the habit of Chiropractic". Habits don't care about feelings, they happen regardless of how you feel.

In the end, people commit to care because they understand and receive value from making Chiropractic a regular part of their lives.

Yours in great health,

Dr. Dane Donohue

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