The Truth About When To Stop Chiropractic Treatment

Chiropractic care is a highly beneficial, non-surgical treatment option that helps relieve a number of painful conditions. Chiropractic treatment sessions generally span several weeks, depending on the particular condition. That makes people believe that chiropractic care might be a long commitment.

However, the truth is that chiropractic care is a results-based treatment strategy. If you are wondering when to stop chiropractic treatment, the answer is that you can discontinue chiropractic treatment with guidelines from your health professional after achieving the desired results.

However, certain other scenarios might warrant stopping chiropractic care, all of which we will discuss below. Read on to learn more! 

When to Say Good-Bye to Chiropractic Treatment?

Chiropractic adjustment has proven to be effective for many musculoskeletal disorders. The majority of individuals seek chiropractic treatment for lower back pain and neck pain. Visiting a chiropractor for migraines is also not uncommon. A chiropractic treatment plan is efficacious, pain-free and also cost-effective, so there is excellent patient compliance.

There are a few prominent initial treatment goals, which, when achieved, allow you to stop treatment. These mainly include:

Pain Relief

The main symptom for which people seek chiropractic therapy is pain. Injury, especially sports injury to the joints, spinal misalignment, and chronic inflammatory conditions like arthritis, are major contributors to long-lasting pain. Most conditions respond well to chiropractic care.

It is safe to quit chiropractic treatment when there is complete resolution of pain and you no longer fear joint pain recurrence. Remember, over-manipulation or getting chiropractic adjustments too frequently can put you at risk of problems like continued pain and joint instability.

Improved Range of Motion

People suffering from chronic inflammatory conditions like osteoarthritis and psoriatic arthritis experience limited joint movement. The reduced mobility significantly interferes with carrying out daily tasks. A single chiropractic visit generally does not improve the condition, but appropriate chiropractic services can improve muscle strength and mobility, especially in post-stroke patients.

You can quit treatment if you have achieved the desired range of joint motion and no longer feel incapacitated by the disorder. Those suffering from post-stroke muscle rigidity and other mobility issues can stop the treatment when they can resume daily activities and perform daily chores without hindrance.


A rather underlooked complication associated with never-ending severe pain is kinesiophobia, i.e., fear of pain. Many people underestimate this symptom and discontinue therapy when physical pain ends.

However, discuss with your chiropractor and only stop therapy when you no longer fear pain during muscle or joint movement. Seeking treatment until complete restoration of functionality is crucial for a healthy, good quality life.

Maintenance Therapy Is Complete

Maintenance therapy is a type of wellness care strategy offered to patients after the completion of the primary treatment plan. It could include exercise, dietary modifications, and lifestyle changes. The main focus of maintenance care is to stay on top of your health by preventing recurrence of pain and maintaining optimal bodily function.  

During this phase, you will visit the chiropractor once in a while, but there are no ongoing visits. This phase of therapy is generally advised after the main symptoms for which you were seeking chiropractic care have gone away, typically pain and discomfort. It is safe to end treatment at any point if your maintenance care is going well.

Chiropractic Adjustments Are Not Working

Chiropractic care is a very potent pain relieving treatment option. Spinal adjustments work best in helping fix a pinched nerve and correcting spinal cord disorders. However, in some cases, chiropractic care may not provide the expected benefit. Sometimes, the severity of the disease is beyond fixing through a spinal manipulation or joint chiropractic adjustment. 

If you feel no improvement and alleviation of pain after multiple sessions or a couple of weeks, it is helpful to seek a second opinion. We suggest you don’t rush to conclusions and try another service provider. As chiropractic adjustment is a hand skill, expertise in the field can significantly influence the treatment results. 

But according to the Mayo Clinic, there is always a possibility that chiropractic care might not be suitable for you, as the effectiveness largely depends on each person’s particular situation.

Exploring Other Treatment Options

Most of the time, chiropractors are in contact with other therapists. Managing soft tissue and joint pain is a multi-disciplinary approach requiring the collaboration of different therapists. So, many patients simultaneously receive treatment options like massage therapy and physical therapy for the best results.

You may stop seeing your chiropractor if there are no symptoms and your body is coping well with the massage or physical therapy. Other effective treatment strategies include acupuncture, acupressure, etc.

Studies show that the collective efforts of massage therapists, chiropractors, and acupuncturists provide superior results. Shifting from one strategy to another is safe.

Why Is It Important to Stop Treatment At the Right Time?

As the saying goes, excess of everything is bad. Therefore, stopping chiropractic care at the appropriate time is essential because excessive manipulation can potentially lead to negative consequences, as previously discussed. 

In addition to timely stoppage, you should allow a sufficient gap between successive sessions. That is crucial to allow your body, including soft tissues, muscles, and joints, to heal and recover without straining them.  

How to Care for Your Body After Stopping Treatment?

Chiropractic treatment realigns your bodily structures and enables you to live pain-free. But if you don’t care for yourself post-treatment, the results might be only temporary. The following are a few things that you should follow after stopping chiropractic treatment for long lasting results:

● Drink lots of water and keep yourself hydrated.

● Improve and maintain your posture.

● Perform light to moderate exercises or stretches

● Add healthy and anti-inflammatory foods, like vegetables and fruits, to your diet.

● Avoid overexerting your joints. Add hectic activities only gradually.

● Make chiropractic exercises and stretches a part of your daily routine.

● Stay mobile and avoid sitting for prolonged periods.

● Make amends to your work environment. Take breaks at work and get help from posture-correcting appliances such as coccyx seats, back cushions, etc.

Final Words

Chiropractic treatment is a safe and noninvasive way of managing musculoskeletal pain. It is a viable choice for people with spinal misalignments and musculoskeletal disorders. But when to stop chiropractic treatment? 

You can safely quit treatment upon achieving your primary treatment goal, such as obtaining pain relief. That means there is also restoration of functionality and joint mobility, and you can make movements without any restrictions. 

Maintenance therapy is often advised after spinal adjustment to maintain normal alignment. During this period, you can quit any time, provided there are no symptoms. Keeping a straight posture, exercising regularly, and eating healthy allows you to maintain the effects of treatment for longer.

If your musculoskeletal pain is keeping you tossing and turning all night, chiropractic manipulation is what you should seek. 

At Logan Osland Chiropractic, we offer various individualized therapies for lasting pain management. 
Get back your moments of happiness and live a pain free life. Schedule your consultation today!

About the Author

Picture of Dr. Logan Osland

Dr. Logan Osland

Dr. Logan Osland, D.C., is a Doctor of Chiropractic deeply rooted in the principles of hard work and community service. Beginning his career in construction, Dr. Osland’s early encounters with back pain led him to chiropractic care, sparking a passion that directed his educational and professional journey. He earned his Doctorate from Palmer College of Chiropractic and has been an active member of the chiropractic community in Ventura, California, since opening his own practice in 2004. Not only does he hold multiple certifications, including in sports medicine and as a strength and conditioning coach, but he has also served as a team doctor for various local sports teams. When not in the clinic, Dr. Osland enjoys an active lifestyle with hobbies like surfing, hiking, and spending quality time with his family.