Common Side Effects of a Chiropractic Adjustment

A trip to the chiropractor for an adjustment may result in much-needed relief. When the bones of the body are thrown out of whack due to overuse, injury, or age, it can result in pain. One of the most interesting things about bone adjustment is that realigning bones in one spot may provide relief in a seemingly unrelated part of the body. To help patients who suffer from chronic pain or injury, doctors are beginning to suggest chiropractic manipulation. What can be expected after an adjustment is performed? Learn about the common side effects patients experience and those that may signal trouble.

Localized Soreness

The area of the body adjusted by the practitioner may feel sore for a few hours after. The pressure placed around the area by the chiropractor, either by hands or special tools, may feel bruised for a short time. The ligaments and muscles around the once misaligned joint may also feel uncomfortable. The pain should be fairly minimal and should go away with time or over-the-counter pain relievers such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen.

Nausea and Dizziness

When the neck or back is adjusted, it may be common to feel nauseous and even dizzy for a few hours after. The nerves running to and from the inner ear may have been temporarily affected by the movement of the adjustment. This can cause a sense of dizziness or vertigo. Along with this, some people feel sick to their stomach, much like that caused by motion sickness. This unwelcome side effect does not stick around too long, and if it does, the practitioner should be informed.


The most commonly felt side effect after any bone adjustment is fatigue. Some patients claim that the entire body feels heavy and that the only relief is lying down to sleep. The reason for this is believed to be the activation of the body’s immune system during the adjustment. White blood cells and fresh blood flow faster towards the newly-aligned bones. This diverts energy from the rest of the body temporarily to bring fresh oxygen and extra protection while the body heals. Thus, exhaustion is a good sign that the body’s response system is acting as it should and that the adjustment was successful.

A chiropractor, like a chiropractor from AmeriWell Clinics, is the only medical practitioner trained to do any spinal manipulation or adjustment. When performed properly, the discomfort should be minimal and fleeting. The effects, however, should provide relief to the body as a whole.