Have You Ever Had Your Back Cracked?

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a few weeks back, i attended a meet-up group for young entrepreneurs and met dr. vashi chetty. she’s a chiropractor in portland, oregon and specializes in treating women and children with her own practice, orchid chiropractic clinic! we decided to support one another and got to talking about how i know nothing about the chiropractic field but how beneficial it can be for your health.

orchid chiropractori’m not going to lie, it sort of freaked me out at first because i had no idea what to expect. i had some fears about my back breaking, snapping my neck and paralyzing me forever (the worries i can make up in my head are incredible).

but again, because my word of the year is BOLD, i decided i would give going to a chiropractor a fair shot and dr. chetty was the perfect person for this. i figured i would document my first experience going to the chiropractor in case you had wanted to visit one but you were unsure of what it would be like!

one of my favorite things about dr. vashi chetty is that she lets me ask as many questions as i need to help alleviate my concerns and walk myself through what the process looks like. she is also incredibly friendly and loves to travel so we had fun talking about upcoming trips!vchetty_imgmy first question to her when we were chatting was, “so…what should i wear?” i know, pretty stereotypical question of a lady concerning wardrobe options but i think of these things. great news everyone, turns out you can wear anything! she did recommend not wearing a dress because sometimes adjustments or muscle stimulation needs to happen on your back and then you’ve got a dress over your head instead of just a shirt pulled up.

i love that she has an online scheduling system, because it’s more convenient for me to compare my travel/work schedule at my own pace and time of day rather than trying to sync things up with a doctor’s office. and i hate talking on the phone so win win for me!

orchid chiropractic clinic is located right in downtown portland (and before you freak out, there is a parking garage right there AND she validates for parking so no hassle). it’s also right by the food carts and the library so you should make an afternoon of it like i did!

before we got started, she asked me a series of questions about any pain or discomfort i was experiencing, any previous injuries and my lifestyle. lucky for me, the only slight discomfort i have is when i workout sometimes and it feels like i need to pop my spine but no injuries. a lot of my work is done hunched over a computer in or in a terrible position on a plane.

here’s an example- (haaaa this was right after we moved in to our new place and my adoring husband cleaned his desk first before i had a chance to do mine. fine- it sort of still looks like this but that pile is gone against the wall!)

chelsea avery deskdr. chetty asked me if i had any concerns or nerves about this being my first chiropractor session and i laid out my laundry list. not only did she answer every single one of my questions thoroughly, she did it in a way that i understood and felt heard.

one of my fears was hearing my body crack, especially my neck. did you know that popping your knuckles isn’t actually a bad thing? or when you hear other pops in your joints, it’s actually the synovial fluid in your joints popping and isn’t harmful-it’s a normal response!

after we went through my history and my anxieties, she wanted to see my flexibility so she had me do an array of exercises like stretching to touch my toes and looking from one side to the other. we discovered that i have less mobility in my neck when i try to look to my right than my left-never noticed that before this appointment!

next, she hooked me up to an interferential current machine (sounds scary but it wasn’t) and it essentially helps relax muscles by sending cross currents with little pads. that’s what’s coming out from under my shirt…i’m not a robot recharging, don’t worry.chelsea chiropractorshe is also fabulous because when i asked her to take my picture while i was on the table, she didn’t look at me weird or anything! do other people wear socks with their boat shoes and jeans?

you set your own “pulse” on the machine for what feels most comfortable to you, depending on how sensitive you are to the pulses and she adjusts it accordingly. you let the machine work it’s magic for about 10-20 minutes and if you’re like me, you drool a little because you fall asleep. classy, i know. that’s why that paper is there, isn’t it?

after that she did some adjustments on my back where she could feel i was misaligned (it did ‘pop’ a little but i didn’t freak out). then she asked if i sat cross-legged often and sure enough…ALL THE TIME. dr. chetty could tell this because my hips were slightly unbalanced and then she showed me where.

vashi with the spinetip: if you sit at a desk all day, don’t cross your leg over your other leg. it leads to overcompensation of one side of your body. instead, if you must cross something (which i feel the need to), cross at your ankles or put a lift on the floor for your feet (that’s what she does).

chiropractic adjustments are great relief for people that have sports injuries, have been in car accidents or even as a preventative measure so if something were to happen to you, your body would recover quicker. she even works on babies!

chiropractors are one of the more hands-on doctors because at one point she did use some of her body weight against mine to adjust my lower back. i’m glad i was wearing deodorant! all jokes aside, i thought this might be a little awkward but dr. chetty is very professional while being friendly so i didn’t feel uncomfortable at all.

the only time i got a little freaked was when she was getting ready to adjust my neck. i already don’t like having my neck touched (even by turtlenecks, you can ask my mom about the fights we’d get in over family pictures involving those strangling shirts). i tried to relax but involuntarily my neck started tensing up and i couldn’t relax my head fully in dr. vashi hands.

she let me know what was going on and i told her i was trying my best to go slack in the neck but no dice. she randomly said “use your right hand and touch your left hip” and BOOM, my head relaxed and was adjusted. she’s good. i didn’t even know there was pressure in that area and after that adjustment, i could move my neck better and a tension was released. she must be like a professional or something. she has a cute office too!

chiropractor portland oregon officedr. chetty said that sometimes people might experience a little bit of soreness and if that happens just put some ice on the area for 20 minutes on/off but not on my body. i felt great! when i walked out of her office, i stood taller-literally because she straightened me out and figuratively because i was bold and did something that i was unsure about. to top it off-my body felt in better alignment and now the pain i had when working out is gone.

i do still need to remember to sit up tall and not cross my legs when i’m sitting (uncrossing them as we speak).

i would highly recommend giving dr. vashi chetty a call if you are experiencing any pain, have an injury or simply want to experience how chiropractic care can be preventative and make you feel in sync! she is covered by most insurance companies and also has a great cash basis discount too!

orchid chiropractic clinic
1020 sw taylor st, suite 260
portland, or 97205
P: 503-896-8355

the new wifestyle: take care of your body and your body will take care of you!

1) have you visited a chiropractor before?
2) your desk right now…messy or clean?
3) what’s a part on your body that you hate to have touched?


  1. Kristi

    June 19, 2014 at 9:03 am

    I have been seeing my chiropractor Dr. Wheeler in Carmichael every two or three weeks for the past six years and completely trust her. I’m seeing her after work today.

    My desk right now is in an between stage. Some might call it messy, but it is clean for my (albeit low) standards.

    I’m not a touchy feely person, so if any part of my body is touched and I’m not expecting it or if I don’t want it, my reaction might be more like my semi anti social cat.

    • chelsea

      June 19, 2014 at 3:23 pm

      that is fantastic that you see your chiropractor so frequently, kristi! hope today’s appointment gets you all in place 🙂 my desk sounds like it’s where your desk is at (although my husband just spilled water all over it so now half of the stuff is on the floor). haaaa love your description of the reaction when people touch you…anti-social cat! thanks for your comment and hope you are doing great!

  2. Ann Snelling

    June 19, 2014 at 11:12 am

    What a great article on chiropractic care. I do hope that Dr. Chetty gets to see this.

    I have had chiropractic care all my life. When I was born, my mom told me that I was cross-eyed. She took me to a blind (!) osteopath in our rural community. An osteopath and a chiropractor do similar manipulations. An osteopath also has an MD degree. Mother said that the Dr. would hold me in his hands and apply small pressure to my body. Whatever he did worked because I have no memory of being cross-eyed.

    Regular chiropractic care makes such an enormous difference to the body. When the body is in correct alignment, it is happy, resulting in overall well being and health.

    I do hope that you continue with regular appointments for a while. Your doctor can suggest a frequency that is right for you.

    Best to you. Hats of for being BOLD in this area. Great step.

    • chelsea

      June 20, 2014 at 8:56 am

      thanks so much for your comment ann! wow that’s so interesting about finding an osteopath in your rural community ann-so glad your mother did that and it worked! absolutely agree that we have to get our bodies in alignment to result in better healthy (next up…my mind!) 🙂 hope you are doing great and thanks for the encouragement!

  3. chuckmen

    June 22, 2014 at 6:00 am

    What a great blog post. I hope all get to read it so they can learn the benefits of going to a chiropractor. For over 20 years, my wife and I having been visiting our incredible chiropractor on a monthly basis to stay aligned. He’s got miracle fingers!

    My desk is “in between” messy and clean. I have my “piles” which I know what’s in them. At work they know NOT to mess with my piles!

    One part of my body that I don’t like messed with are my ears lobes. I don’t know why but I don’t like them bothered with.

    • chelsea

      June 23, 2014 at 10:43 am

      thanks so much for not only reading the post but also comment chuckmen! 🙂 that is so fantastic that you have been benefiting from your chiropractor for 20 years-goes to show you just how excellent it is for you! i hear you on not messing with those piles because you can easily find things there (contrary to other people’s beliefs). i will also be sure not to mess with your earlobes 🙂 funny how there are just certain things we don’t like! have a great day