A new patient receiving chiropractic treatment.

Are There Any Side Effects of a Chiropractic Adjustment? Know Before You Go

Don’t be nervous to book your appointment. While there are a lot of myths and misinformation surrounding chiropractic care and potential side effects, it can actually be one of the best things you’ve done for yourself in years!

If you’re on the fence about booking your first chiropractic adjustment, we’re here to give you trusted information to ease your mind. Adverse effects are very rare – and the most common side effects are as mild as those you experience after a workout. The benefits, however, can be life-changing.

What Does a Chiropractor Do During a Session?

During your first visit to the chiropractor, the doctor will test your range of motion and ask questions about any incidents that could have impacted your wellness and cause recurring muscle or back pain. If need be, the chiropractor may also perform an x-ray to identify the root of any specific problems.

After doctors finish collecting new patient information, they devise a treatment plan. During this stage, it’s important to discuss your needs and concerns – it will result in better care across the board. Then, you’ll receive your first spinal adjustment.

What is Chiropractic Care?

When you receive chiropractic care, your doctor will perform chiropractic manipulation of spinal joints and other high-tension areas. In addition to spinal manipulation, they may provide soft-tissue and manual therapy or perform cervical manipulation – more commonly known as neck manipulation.

Benefits of Chiropractic Care

While spinal manipulation can sound scary, it’s actually beneficial for your entire body. Chiropractic treatment can relieve lower back pain, joint pain, and even provide pain relief for chronic migraines. Chiropractic care is also an effective treatment for herniated discs and muscle spasms.

Adjustments also treat some conditions that might surprise you: chronic fatigue, high blood pressure, asthma, and even insomnia and depression. By adjusting spinal misalignments, you reset your nervous system and increase your blood flow, releasing positive hormones and allowing your body to function optimally. This leads to an increase in wellness overall.

→ [Free Guide] Go beyond pain relief, and explore the other ways chiropractic care can benefit you with our FREE guide!

What Side Effects Are Caused By Chiropractic Treatments?

If you’ve been putting off a visit to the chiropractor despite chronic neck and low back pain, it’s probably because you’re afraid of adverse effects.

Severe potential side effects, such as the worsening of a herniated disc, are extremely rare. In fact, estimates say that they only occur in .05 to 1.46 per 10,000,000 manipulations.

When done by a licensed professional, chiropractic treatments are incredibly safe. Studies have shown that the most common side effects are harmless and resolve shortly after treatment. The following are the most common reactions to receiving chiropractic treatment.


After chiropractic treatment, you may feel some soreness in your joints or muscles or even mild neck pain. But typically, you’ll feel the same amount of discomfort that you would feel after completing a workout. Any soreness you feel as a result of your treatment should resolve within 24-48 hours. It’s important to drink plenty of water after each adjustment.


Some people experience mild fatigue after a visit to the chiropractor. Fatigue could be due to muscle soreness, manipulation or an increase in blood flow.


It’s not extremely common, but some people (less than 5% of those who have received treatment) report mild headaches after a spinal adjustment. Usually, this is caused by increased blood flow to the head and neck and will resolve within a few hours of your visit. Again, it’s important to stay hydrated before and after treatment.


Less than 5% of people who receive chiropractic treatment report dizziness and fainting afterward. The shock to your nervous system from the new alignment of your spine can cause a small amount of dizziness immediately after adjustment. But, like most common side effects, this resolves quickly.

Flu Symptoms

Toxins stored within your joint capsules can be released into your system after a chiropractic treatment, potentially causing mild flu-like symptoms for a day or two after treatment, including fever and sweating. While this sounds scary, it’s a sign that the chiropractic treatment has been effective. Drinking plenty of fluids will aid in removing those toxins from your system.

Get Aligned at Meridian HealthCare

Chiropractic treatment from a licensed practitioner is extremely safe and beneficial. Even better, the side effects of a chiropractic adjustment are mild and resolve quickly – helping you to be more active and pain-free.

If you’re looking for whole-person, integrated wellness, then a trip to the chiropractor can help you get in balance and feel better than you have in years. There’s no reason to be nervous about booking your first appointment with a chiropractor – they are skilled healthcare professionals who are ready to make a difference in your life.

Meridian HealthCare’s experienced chiropractors are part of our dedicated integrated care team. If you’re looking for a new solution for your chronic pain, reach out today to schedule an appointment. A better tomorrow is possible with the proper care.