Ask Dr. G

Here are the answers to the most commonly asked questions about chiropractors in Costa Mesa. Knowing the answers to these important questions will help you pick the best chiropractor in Costa Mesa for you. If we didn't cover a question you may have, give Garcia Chiropractic a call at (949) 891-2459 and we will be more than happy to help answer your question.

What is a chiropractor?

A Chiropractor is a healthcare provider that provides specific adjustments to a person’s spinal column in order to ensure optimal communication, coordination, and healing of all parts of said body. A Chiropractor is highly trained in anatomy, physiology, and biomechanics of the human spine.

Highly thought of as complementary to Medical care, Chiropractic is an alternative approach that first recognizes and explicitly works to facilitate the body’s innate ability to self-regulate and heal. This is unique and opposite to the allopathic or medical approach that uses therapies, chemicals, and surgery to mitigate symptoms (the sensory complaints) doing nothing to restore or promote health and homeostasis of the organism.

Example: The patient has lower back pain caused by muscle spasm.

Medical Approach:

  • Consultation, exam
  • Muscle relaxers and pain medication are prescribed
  • The patient feels better, the structural problem still exists and will continue to degenerate

Chiropractic Approach:

What is chiropractic care?

Chiropractic Care is the philosophy, science, and art of Adjusting the spinal column in order to restore optimal alignment and remove interference to the communication of the brain and spinal cord. Chiropractic care is the only approach the specific care for the optimal expression of life through the central nervous system and thus the best option for those looking to optimize there health and longevity.

Are chiropractors doctors?

Yes, Chiropractors are licensed doctors in all 50 states and primary physicians in many of those states including California.

Does Chiropractic Work?

Chiropractic has been shown to be the most effective treatment for mechanical lower back pain, sciatica and specific upper cervical chiropractic care has been shown to be effective in reducing blood pressure, headaches and neck pain without the use of dangerous drugs or surgery.

Are chiropractic adjustments safe?

Chiropractic Adjustments are one of the safest procedures in the entire healthcare industry. When discussing the risks of any health care procedure, it is important to look at the risks associated with the most common alternatives for the same condition.

In the case of neck pain and or headache pain spinal adjustments compare very favorably to the use of NSAIDS (Tylenol, ibuprofen, Advil,…etc.) or prescription pain medication. According to the Journal of Gastroenterology, people taking NSAIDS are 3 times more likely to experience gastrointestinal bleeding or perforation than those who do not take NSAIDs. The risk rises to more the 5 times if you are over the age of 60.

More dangerous are prescription pain medications like Oxycotin, Vicodin, etc., boast horrific stats such as:

  • After 7 days of opioid prescription medication use, 1/12th of patients become addicted
  • After 30 days of opioid prescription medication use, 1/3 become addicted
  • Over 15,000 people die annually due to opioid overdoses (more than the total deaths from cocaine and heroin combined)

Our country is suffering from adverse reactions to a flawed approach to symptom management rather than Health restoration. The choice is yours.

Are there chiropractic adjustment side effects?

In order to best answer this question, first, let us examine what a side effect is. A side effect is an undesirable effect of a medication. The purpose of medication is to relieve symptoms and any other effect of the medication is just labeled side effect which is an effect directly caused by the medication.

A chiropractic adjustment is the specific adjustment of vertebrae back to its proper position with respect to the vertebrae above and below thus the intended effect is to adjust the position. The associated side effects or effects of a properly positioned vertebrae include pain relief, improved range of motion, reduced inflammation, reduced spasm improved tissue and organ function.

When dealing with sore muscle, joints and nerves there can be some sensation of pressure, soreness, pinching and discomfort if a suboptimal angle of adjustment is applied.

Here at Garcia Chiropractic we perform a thorough evaluation and utilize digital X-Ray imaging when appropriate to ensure optimal adjustment angle and technique so you can be sure you are getting customized care to your spinal condition.

How many chiropractic sessions do you need?

Each patient responds to adjustments uniquely determined by their level of stress, cumulative trauma, age, daily routine, and size. Chiropractic care supports healing in the body and thus depending on what tissue is causing pain will determine the length of recommended care.

Some patients only come in when they are in pain while others rehabilitate optimal spinal function. To better understand how Dr. G offers recommendations for care lets first look at how long certain tissue takes to heal.

  1. Muscle (6 to 8 weeks)
  2. Tendon (6-8 weeks)
  3. Ligament grade 1 (12 weeks)
  4. Ligament grade 2 (12-24 weeks)
  5. Intervertebral disc (12 months)
  6. Nerve (12-18 months)
  7. Bone (1-2 years)

How much does a chiropractic care cost?

We would never want finances to get in the way of the care you need so we have created the most clinically sound system to customize care for each individual at an affordable rate.

Initial Consultations are complimentary and our office visits vary depending on your insurance coverage rate, condition and recommended treatment. Finding us online you are eligible for our New Patient Special which includes X-Rays (if necessary) and your first custom adjustment for only $87. Our staff will review your benefits (if insurance covers care in our office), our fees and provide choices moving forward. We are committed to helping all patients in need of pain relief and have made our fees affordable and payment plans flexible to accommodate any budget.

Why should you choose your office?

Most Chiropractic offices offer the same routine adjustments that help a good portion of people feel less pressure. Dr. Garcia’s Method of spinal correction has a 6-step process that utilizes digital X-Ray and his unique expertise in alignment analysis, which boasts the clinical certainty to help the most sensitive cases get safe, effective relief from pain. If you want the best most cost-effective means to optimal health your are in the right place.

How can I find a chiropractor near me?

Look no further, you have found the best Chiropractor in the South Coast Metropolitan area! If you are not from the area and cannot travel to our Costa Mesa location be sure to contact our office for a referral. Dr. Garcia is well connected to excellent clinicians around the world and can certainly help find you a great Chiropractor in your area.

What does a chiropractor treat?

Chiropractors treat vertebral subluxation. They are specially trained in neuromuscular disorders and skeletal alignment. Chiropractors receive special training in manual adjustment techniques that restore optimal alignment and function to the spinal column and body, which results in pain relief, improved flexibility, range of motion, balance, coordination, and function. 

How do chiropractors relieve pain from injuries or accidents?

Dr. Garcia’s thorough evaluation and specific corrective process ensure pain relief from a recent trauma will first correctly be identified by combining postural, chiropractic, orthopedic and X-Ray analysis. Second, Dr. G will determine the ideal technique to both deliver fast relief and address the structural damage to ensure your best chance at a fast, long-lasting recovery. Dr. G utilizes some nutritional supplements in order to cut the inflammatory response (initial pain and swelling of tissue damage) down to a third of the usual time!

What other conditions can be treated by chiropractic care?

Chiropractic is a healing art that focuses on alignment and neurological function. Restoring and facilitating the healing process in the body is what Chiropractic care is all about. Therefore, it is best to reference what parts of the body are related to which part of the spine/nervous system and that can help you see what a healthy spine is responsible for.

Can I get chiropractic care during pregnancy?

Yes, Dr. Garcia is knowledgeable of the physiological changes associated with pregnancy and takes necessary precautions to ensure comfortable safe pain relief and optimal pelvic alignment for healthy baby and birth.

We modify the analysis and adjustment according to comfort, time of pregnancy and physiological presentation. We boast fantastic results with a substantial reduction in sciatic pain, back pain, hip pain, leg pain, wrist pain.

Pregnancy is an incredible demonstration of the human body’s capacity for adaptation and creation. There are dramatic physical changes in a short period of time that can cause pain and discomfort. There are different challenges with each phase, and these can be reduced or mitigated with specific chiropractic care from Dr. G.

1st Trimester:
This is the time the fetus (at this point a clump of stem cells) begins multiplying and differentiating into the notochord or what will become the brain and spinal cord (the central nervous system is the first organ to develop).

In it is important to focus on ensuring optimal sacral position with NON-force techniques to gently facilitate ideal nerve flow to the uterus. In this time, it is common to experience nausea and vomiting mostly during the morning but in some cases in waves throughout the day. Upper Cervical alignment and nutritional supplements are essential and can help provide some relief from nausea.

2nd Trimester:
By this time the fetus and placenta are firmly established and stable within the uterine wall. The fetus continues to grow and develop. The increased load on the lumbar spine (lower back) and natural loosening of ligaments caused by high levels of progesterone can irritate underlying issues in the spinal column.

Common symptoms associated with this phenomenon are back pain, sciatica, hip pain, knee pain, foot and ankle pain, shoulder pain, wrist pain, and neck pain. Dr. G utilizes gentle effective techniques to deliver pain relief while ensuring safety for your baby and without dangerous medications.

3rd Trimester:
The final stage of pregnancy is the body preparing for birth. At 36 weeks you may have an ultrasound showing fetal position. In some cases, the baby may not be in an optimal position either breech (head up), or transverse (side-lying).

There are many recommendations online and some drastic that Dr. G does not recommend. It is this time that you need an experienced Doctor of Chiropractic that knows how to facilitate spinal and pelvic position to allow the body to properly position the baby late in pregnancy.

How does a chiropractor help neck and lower back pain?

To better understand how relief is achieved let us first discuss how and why our brain interprets pain. The brain interprets information from certain nerves that we experience as pain, this is referred to as nociception in anatomy.

Pain is our brain’s mechanism of self-protection. The most powerful motivator in life is avoiding pain as noted by all sciences of behavior and psychology. When pain receptors are triggered this puts a high priority on immobilization or prevention of motion. This lack of motion is ideal for the healing of sensitive tissue.

When vertebral subluxation is present the distortion of bony position can also distort the body’s ability to heal and thus continually creates a cycle of pain and disease. A chiropractor will examine and determine where the spinal distortion is and apply and adjustment to correct the alignment. When in alignment the body’s healing mechanism will resume. Interference to healing occurs when you are out of alignment. Once healing has occurred the perception of pain will be unnecessary and thus eradicated.

Simply put when in Alignment the body heals.

How does a chiropractor help sciatica?

A skilled Chiropractor will first identify the spinal dysfunction and location of nerve entrapment and make specific adjustments to release the sciatic nerve or one of the many nerve roots that contribute to the sciatic nerve and allow the normal movement of the elastic nerve tissue eliminating the traveling pain down the leg. Often Sciatica is misdiagnosed and should be properly evaluated by Dr. G as soon as possible.

What types of pain do chiropractors treat?

Pain caused by:

  • Vertebral Subluxation
  • Pinched nerves
  • Stenosis
  • Disc Bulges
  • Disc Degeneration
  • Disc Herniations
  • Arthritis
  • Sports Injuries
  • Auto Accidents
  • Slip and Falls

Do chiropractic adjustments hurt?

Chiropractic adjustments are precise and designed to release pressure so no they should be comfortable. If there is soft tissue damage in the case of trauma such as sports injuries or auto-accidents there could be some discomfort with contact like touching a bruised area but adjustments are pain-relieving in nature as they restore proper alignment, reduce spasm and inflammation. As a general rule, 80% of patients feel improvement after the first adjustment and 20% either feel the same or feel pain/soreness in another area. In some cases, there may be a reaction to an adjustment as follows:

  • Feeling lighter, more ease of motion
  • Ability to take a deep breath with ease
  • Feeling more energetic
  • Feeling tired after an adjustment? Go take a nap you are sleep deprived
  • Drop-in pressure in the head
  • Pain relief
  • Clearing of sinus pressure

If you have been hurt by a Chiropractic Adjustment before it is necessary to choose Dr. G to be sure you get the appropriate care and technique for your condition. Dr. G is an expert in tailoring his approach to each individual determined by a thorough evaluation and his unique corrective care process.

Why do adjustments sometimes make a popping sound?

The popping or “cracking” sound is produced when a high-velocity thrust is applied to a compressed joint and the pressure releases when the joint opens to its full physiological capability! This is associated with improved movement, function, and relief.

The spinal column has 24 individual vertebrae and each vertebra has 4-12 joints articulating that segment. Imagine 121 opportunities to improve function, health, and vitality. Thank God for Chiropractic Care!

Are all patients adjusted the same way?

Absolutely not! Each patient will be adjustment specific to the presentation of there alignment each visit and as they progress. The goal of care is to correct Upper Cervical and sacral alignment and to facilitate the uncoiling process (See Dr. Garcia’s Unique Corrective Care Process)

Will a chiropractic adjustment completely remove back pain?

It is rare however possible for an adjustment to completely remove the pain. This depends on the condition of the spine, the patient and how long the structural problem has been present.

People feel relief and different times and most often much earlier than soft tissue healing and correction. Healing has a timeframe depending on each tissue. Clinically speaking with spinal problems, you can expect to improve 30% in 30 days with ideal care.

Can I learn to adjust myself?

An adjustment is necessary to applied force by another person thus it is impossible to adjust one’s self. In order to receive an adjustment, you must be completely relaxed and in a receptive mode.

It is especially advised to refrain from any self-manipulation of the neck as it further establishes imbalance and dysfunctional biomechanics rendering correction and rehabilitation of the region more difficult.

Will I be required to remove my clothing at my appointment?

In order to obtain clinically superior X-Rays Dr. Garcia may require the removal of any clothing that contains metallic parts as well as shoes in order to provide a weight-bearing analysis of pelvis and spinal alignment.

Is chiropractic treatment appropriate for children?

Chiropractic Care can be applied to all persons during any phase or stage of life. This optimizes alignment, function and thus health. Specific precautions and protocols are taken with each stage of life and these will be communicated during your visit.

No care is rendered without full explanation and consent. Dr. Garcia recommends getting your children checked weekly to ensure optimal development of the nervous system.


8:00am - 11:30am
3:00pm - 6:30pm

10:00am - 1:00pm

8:00am - 11:30am
3:00pm - 6:30pm

10:00am - 1:00pm

8:00am - 11:30am
3:00pm - 6:30pm


Garcia Chiropractic
1503 South Coast Drive #319
Costa Mesa, CA 92626
(949) 891-2459