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What To Expect In Your Health Assessment? And Why Do We Do It?

If you’re interested in trying tonal chiropractic care at Launch Wellness, you may have wondered what happens in your health assessment, and why do we do it?

We use this assessment time not only to run a few tests to try and determine the underlying problem of your pain but also to get to know you, hear about your health goals, and explain what we do at Launch Wellness. Our goal is to figure out if we are truly a good fit for you and your long-term goals. 

In this article, we’ll discuss the four main goals of this assessment, talk more about the type of tests we run and what they measure, and answer a few FAQs so you can arrive at your appointment feeling confident and ready to go.

Prefer to skip the reading and jump right to booking a health assessment? We’d love to see you, book with us today!

Table of Contents

  1. Why Do We Have The Launch Wellness Health Assessment?
  2. What To Expect During Your Health Assessment
  3. What Tests Will We Do?
  4. What Happens After Your Assessment?
  5. Ready To Get Started? Book Your Assessment Today!

Why Do We Have The Launch Wellness Health Assessment?

We’re committed to not only returning your body to pre-injury or pre-pain status but supporting you to reach your health goals and getting your body to a place where it can adapt to daily stressors. This means when you walk through our doors, the last thing we are going to do is start adjusting you before we even know what is happening in your body.

We use this health assessment to accomplish our four main goals.

Goal #1: Learn About You & Your Health Goals

We start the health assessment with a discussion about you. We want to learn more about your lifestyle and health goals. We want to understand the type of daily stressors your body encounters, including mental, physical, and chemical.

Our thorough intake form gives us a great deal of information about your pain and your past health records. During this first visit, we dive into your form to learn more about your pain and what you want to accomplish. We can often better understand your presenting complaints by looking at your past and present health concerns.

We want to get the full picture so that we can adjust not only our treatment plan but the rest of your health assessment accordingly.

Goal #2: Determine The Root Cause Of Your Pain & Start Your Education Journey

When you come to Launch Wellness, we will not only examine the current pain you’re experiencing but also look into where the pain could be coming from and what other factors may be contributing to this pain. Figuring out and resolving the root cause is the only way we can truly help you get back to a place of health.

We believe another key part of this process is to connect, empower, and engage you with curiosity about how your body works. Ultimately, you are the one who does the healing. We want to give you the confidence to “use” healthcare practitioners or providers to help guide and support you towards meeting your health/life goals.

We firmly believe that you are our best resource in determining what your body needs because you know your body better than any doctor or practitioner ever will. It’s not our goal to finish your education during this visit, but we hope to start the journey.

Goal #3: Determine How Well Your Body Is Currently Adapting To Stress & Create A Baseline

As we start to look into the root cause of your pain, we may find that a big component of your concern is coming from an area of your body that is not functioning the way we would like.

At Launch Wellness, we define “healthy” as how well your body recovers from stress. A healthy person’s body can adapt and recover when new stressors come its way. Someone who is not as healthy may find their body unnecessarily getting stuck in a stressed or suppressed state, ultimately stopping their ability to heal.

As we look into how your body is adapting to stress, we also think it’s important to monitor a number of metrics so we can watch your progress and shift our approach if what we’re doing isn’t working for you.

Only measuring our health on how we feel may not be a reliable measurement without the context of how our body is functioning. If we base everything on how we are feeling, then we might give up or change an approach that is actually improving our level of function.

It’s important to have data to track our improvements rather than subjective measurements and guessing if something is working as it should.

Goal #4: Figure Out If We Can Help & Create A Treatment Plan

An assessment is the ONLY way that we can figure out if we can help. This starts with us determining if your health goal/concern is something that we can help you reach or if there is a step before seeing us that would better help you achieve your goals.

We’re invested in getting you feeling better, and if that’s not through us, we’ll help you find someone else who can help.

If we are the ones to get you there, we will spend some time going over what our intervention method looks like, and what the next steps are. We want to make sure you understand our approach and feel confident about what we are doing every step of the way.

What To Expect During Your Health Assessment

We use the time during your health assessment to measure the efficiency and accuracy (function) of your nervous system’s ability to perceive, integrate, and respond to stressors.

A nervous system that can do this well can heal itself from normal stress. A healthy nervous system might look like a muscle system that can accurately and efficiently perform movements that maintain balance or avoid injury.

We will use and perform several tests In order to measure the functionality of your nervous system. Two of the tests we will perform requires access to your back, as the spinal cord is a key player in functioning your nervous system. We’ll give you a gown to put on so we can more easily access your back. Once this test is complete, we’ll leave the room again and let you put your clothes back on before continuing the rest of the assessment.

One of our test involves us collecting data of your posture by taking digital photos which are then reviewed through our postural assessment process. This will collect additional data on you, such as your height, weight and DOB. If at any point, you are uncomfortable with the data or tests we are conducting, you can always decline. You are truly in the driver’s seat when it comes to this examination. We will never do anything you are not comfortable with.

Commonly Asked Questions

Q: How Long Does The Health Assessment Take?

A: The health assessment tends to take about 45 minutes. We require you to fill out the intake form before arriving so that we can use this time to its fullest while you are here.

Q: What Should I Bring To My Health Assessment?

A: Comfortable clothing (athletic wear), preferably form-hugging. We’ll do a few light movement exercises during this examination to see what might be happening in your body.

Q: Will I Be Getting Adjusted In The Health Assessment?

A: We don’t adjust during this assessment. Instead, we use this time as an opportunity to learn about you, your goals, and what could be happening in your body rather than providing a temporary solution. From there, we make a plan together of what intervention will look like and how we can get your body to respond better to stress.

What Tests Will We Do?

We use tests that measure how nerve tension is affecting your body’s ability to function at it’s best. This can help us understand why and how you’re reacting to stressors that arise in your everyday life. The data from these tests can guide our intervention to get your body back to where it can function and heal properly.

Before we dive into what each assessment will be measuring, we think it’s important to note that the tests we conduct (apart from the Ortho/Neuro NMSK portion if required) are not used to diagnose a specific condition or disease.

HRV – Heart Rate Variability

What Are We Measuring?

This test measures the tension in nerves that control your heart & breathing rate– Cardiorespiratory System.

We measure your HRV in order to understand how your nervous system is responding to stress. When we do this test you are in a period of rest. Ideally, we would see a balance between alertness & calmness at rest.

It would be a normal finding to see elevated levels of alertness in a person’s nervous system who was working out. But when we see this at rest, it may signify that the nervous system is working overtime.

Consequently, someone with high levels of parasympathetic– rest/digest– activity would be considered normal during periods of sleep. But seeing this during awake hours of the day could signify that the nerve system’s resources are depleted, and recovery/regeneration rates are lower than desired.

Either imbalance may be a key contributor to understanding why someone is not healing from nagging pain or other chronic health concerns.

What You’ll Experience

To do this test, we’ll have you sit in a calm and still state for three and a half minutes with your left hand in the device.

Posture / sEMG Assessment

What Are We Measuring?

Posture is an expression of where our nervous system feels safe and energy-efficient. This test measures how much energy the spine muscles are using while seated.

When your body requires a lot of energy to maintain a stable spine, your muscles can overwork themselves, leading to poor energy distribution in the body. This, in turn, can affect how the body deals with maintaining its other functions.

Often overlooked contributors to poor posture are emotional & chemical lifestyle stressors. These include things such as a high-pressure work environment, shift work, relationship conflicts, poor diet, school & social factors etc.

When we assess your posture, we are not only considering the effects that repetitive physical stress may have on the body. We’re also examining how other lifestyle factors may be contributing to these patterns of pain.

What You’ll Experience

During this test, we’ll ask that you remove any upper body clothing you are wearing and put a clinic gown we provide you that opens in the back. We will then take readings using a handheld scanner of your spine from bottom to top. We’ll do this while you are seated with feet flat on the floor and hands resting palm up on your thighs.

Thermography

What Are We Measuring?

This test measures the nerves’ tension level that controls and regulates our body’s “automatic” functions. These automatic functions include things such as your heart rate, respiration, temperature regulation, digestion, metabolism, immunity, healing, sleep & recovery etc. These functions are key to keeping us alive.

Your Integumentary System– or your skin– is the largest organ of the body, and it’s the furthest away from the CNS. We measure subtle differences in skin temperature on each side of the spine. These differences in skin temperature can offer insight into how the nervous system controls organs, glands and blood vessels of the body.

When the autonomic nervous system is overwhelmed and out of balance we see an imbalance in skin temperatures from side to side of the spine.

What You’ll Experience

During this test, we’ll ask that you remove any upper body clothing you are wearing and put on one of our gowns. We will then take readings using a handheld scanner of your spine from bottom to top. We’ll do this while you are seated with feet flat on the floor and hands resting palm up on your thighs.

Ortho / Neuro NMSK Assessment

What Are We Measuring?

Depending on the location of your injury and presenting complaint, we will assess the problem area using observation, palpation, joint motion, strength and coordination tests. These observations allow us to look at the site of concern more closely and consider what may be happening in the body to cause this issue.

Injuries to the body can impact how multiple body areas function and heal, so we must observe these areas to better understand your limitations. These observations allow us to create a better treatment plan. One that is most suited to you, your injury, and your goals.

These tests can sometimes be uncomfortable as they are designed to reproduce the pain you’re experiencing. During these tests, you can tell us to stop if the pain or apprehension is too great and/or you think there is a risk for further injury. All of our tests are performed at a slow pace so that you are truly in the driver’s seat.

What You’ll Experience

These tests are only performed if you have associated pain stemming from either overuse of an area or sudden onset of pain resulting from an injury.

Each test in this subset aims to reproduce and isolate the pain/symptom to help us understand what tissue or area was strained or inflamed. Understanding this can help set expectations of healing times and responses to care.

These tests will change from person to person depending on your specific injury. We will always discuss what tests will be performed and what may be experienced before performing them on your body.

Active / Passive / Resisted ROM

What Are We Measuring?

Performing this test is subject to whether you have an injury or not. If this test is needed, we’ll get you to complete certain movements to allow us to understand better the limitations of your movement function and your presenting neuromuscular injury.

These tests also allow us to gain a baseline of movement proficiency so we can better monitor your progression with us.

What You’ll Experience

This test can involve a general movement screen and/or specific resisted muscle tests. We will ask you to perform certain movements to better understand what muscles or ligaments could have been damaged by the injury. We will also use this test to examine where someone’s asymmetries and postural biases are.

Blinded March / Rhomberg’s / Tandem Gait

What Are We Measuring?

We use this test to get a sense of how your brain sees your body. Closing your eyes and changing your support base by using different foot positions during standing balance drills make balancing more challenging.

The brain works harder when we change our support base. Doing this allows us to understand how accurate someone’s brain’s body map is. We are specifically looking at the brain’s ability to maintain balance, coordination, and spatial awareness during these exercises.

What You’ll Experience

This is a balance and coordination drill. We’ll get you to perform a series of standing positions that will challenge your ability to balance during this test.

What Happens After Your Assessment?

After your health assessment, we schedule a findings session. A 30-45 minute session to take you through the results from the assessment.

We review what the results mean in terms of their health concerns, the benefits chiropractic care can offer, and how we can help you achieve your goals with a specific treatment approach. We’ll also use this time to discuss any potential risks and alternative treatment options.

Finally, we will discuss the phases of care we offer at Launch Wellness and how they take you closer to your health goals

Phase #1 – Corrective Care (3 months)

This is the time frame we suggest committing to for any intervention.

A high percentage of our body’s tissues regenerate during a three-month time frame, giving us the opportunity for consistent habits/actions to yield significant results.

You will start in this phase generally if your efficiency scores are lower than 70 on the CoreScore scans and you’re committed to improving your level of health.

This phase usually takes three months to complete, with six to eight sessions a month.

Phase #2 – Restorative Care (9 months)

Clients enter this phase of care when their neural efficiency scores improve to 70+. We assess your score at the end of Phase 1 to see if you’re ready to take this next step in your healing process.

During this phase, we’ll start to incorporate goal setting and tracking improvements in movement proficiency, metabolic health, mental health, rest & recovery habits.

The frequency of chiropractic-centric visits is reduced to four to six sessions a month, but reassessments are still planned and measured every three months or twelve visits.

Phase #3 – Optimization Care (12 months +)

During this phase, we shift toward focusing on longevity and overall health and wellness. This is where we maintain your healthy nervous system and help keep you in a place where your nervous system is functioning optimally so we can help you avoid reentering the cycle of pain. This involves one to four sessions a month, depending on your goals.

It’s important to note that not everyone will start in phase one, and not everyone will move through these phases at the same rate.

The phase of care that a client will start in depends on:

  • Their starting level of function/health
  • Their health goals– both short term or long term
  • Their level of commitment to achieving their goal.

Typically a client will have a higher frequency of visits at the beginning of our approach and then taper off as their health metrics improve. A client chooses how long their commitment/relationship is with us.

Ready To Get Started? Book Your Assessment Today!

The best way to discover if chiropractic care at Launch Wellness is right for you is to come in and see us. During your assessment, we’ll take a closer look at your nervous system to see what the root of the problem could be, start learning about your goals for treatment, and if we are the right provider to get you there.

We not only work to help you get your body back to a healthy state but also use this as an opportunity to educate you on your body and pain. You should know your body better than anyone. We want to help get you to a place where you know exactly what your body needs.

This health assessment is by no means a commitment. We want to make sure this is a relationship that is right for us both, so use this as an opportunity to ask us questions– we encourage it!

If you’re ready to start to get your body back to a place of healthy functioning– book your health assessment today! We’d love to discuss your goals and how we can help you get there.