What to expect
The provider networks of NIA consist of several different health care specialties as listed below. Each section includes a definition of the specialty along with some expectations for treatment:
Chiropractic is a branch of the healing arts concerned with human health and disease processes. Doctors of chiropractic pay special attention to the spinal, musculoskeletal, and neurological systems. They use current diagnostic and therapeutic procedures, including the adjustment and manipulation of the joints and surrounding tissues, particularly of the spinal column.
When the doctor of chiropractic diagnoses a condition where drugs, surgery or special medical intervention would be desirable, the patient is referred to the appropriate medical provider. Likewise, many medical doctors will refer to the chiropractic when manipulative therapy will prove beneficial.
Manipulation is treatment using the doctor's hands to apply body leverage and a physical thrust to one joint or a group of related joints to restore normal function. Through the use of manipulation, the doctor seeks to provide relief from symptoms, improve joint and muscle function, and speed recovery.
Additional information may be found at: www.amerchiro.org
Acupuncture is one of the oldest, most commonly used medical procedures in the world. Traditional Chinese medicine theorizes that there are more than 2,000 acupuncture points on the human body, and that these connect with 12 main and 8 secondary pathways called meridians. Chinese medicine practitioners believe these meridians conduct energy, or qi (pronounced "chee"), throughout the body.
Acupuncture needles are metallic, solid, and hair-thin. People experience acupuncture differently, but most feel no or minimal pain as the needles are inserted. Some people are energized by treatment, while others feel relaxed. Improper needle placement, movement of the patient, or a defect in the needle can cause soreness and pain during treatment. This is why it is important to seek treatment from a qualified acupuncture practitioner. All practitioners in the Magellan network undergo rigorous standards and verification of education, licensure and competency.
Further details on acupuncture can be found from the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine: nccam.nih.gov
According to the American Massage Therapy Association, Massage is manual soft tissue manipulation, and includes holding, causing movement, and/or applying pressure to the body. This involves the manipulation of the soft tissue structures of the body to prevent and alleviate pain, discomfort, muscle spasm, and stress; and, to promote health and wellness. Massage therapy may improve functioning of the circulatory, lymphatic, muscular, skeletal, and nervous systems and may affect the rate at which the body recovers from injury and illness.
Please refer to www.amtamassage.org for further details and what to expect during a massage therapy session.
Physical Therapy is a profession with widespread clinical applications in the restoration, maintenance, and promotion of optimal physical function. Physical Therapists diagnose and manage movement dysfunction and enhance physical and functional abilities. They provide help for every part of the body for everyone from infants to elderly.
You can expect a visit to a physical therapist will begin with an examination, diagnosis, and treatment of the immediate problem. They may teach you how to take care of yourself by showing you how to do exercises and how to use your body properly to gain strength and mobility and prevent recurring injury. They may advise you on proper posture and body motion, have specific methods for treating your injury or disease, provide consultation on fitness, or administer care in the home.
For additional information visit the web site of the American Physical Therapy Association at: www.apta.org
According to the American Occupational Therapy Association, Occupational Therapy is skilled treatment that helps individuals achieve independence in all facets of their lives. Occupational Therapy gives people the "skills for the job of living" that are needed for independent and satisfying lives. Services typically include:
- Customized treatment programs aimed at improving abilities to carry out the activities of daily living
- Comprehensive evaluation of home and job environments and recommendations on necessary adaptation
- Assessments and treatment for performance skills
- Recommendations and training in the use of adaptive equipment
For further information: www.aota.org
Regardless of the many ways to express language, it is essential to our human interactions. According to the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association, the professionals who are educated to assess speech and language development and to treat speech and language disorders are speech-language pathologists. They may also be referred to as speech therapists. Another primary condition they diagnose and treat are swallowing disorders.
Additional information can be found at: www.asha.org