Suite 174
Palliser Square One
125 9th Avenue SE
Calgary, AB T2G 0P6

Frequently Asked Questions of Tower Chiropractic and Massage

At Tower Chiropractic, Massage & Acupuncture we are more than happy to answer any questions you may have and if we do not have an immediate answer to your query, we will find out the answer!


Chiropractic FAQs (click to reveal answer)

Q) Do I need a referral from my MD to make an appointment at Tower Chiro?
A) No, patients do not have to be referred to Tower Chiro or Massage. However, while you are entitled to care without a medical prescription, you may find that some extended health care plans require a referral from your MD in order to process your claim.

Q) Will my extended health care plan cover the cost of my treatment?
A) In most cases, your extended health care plan will provide either partial or full coverage for chiropractic care and massage therapy (RMT)

Q) Does my initial Chiropractic or Massage assessment include a treatment?
A) Yes, your first treatment will take place immediately following your initial assessment.

Q) How long will my first appointment take?
A) An initial assessment takes roughly 30 to 45 minutes, during which time your practitioner will review your medical history and carry out a thorough physical exam. He or she will then discuss your treatment plan and what you can expect along the way.

Q) What should I wear?
A) It is best to wear loose-fitting, comfortable clothing. If you have an upper body injury (e.g.: shoulder or lower back), please bring a non-restrictive T-shirt or tank top. If you have a lower body injury (e.g.: knee or hip), please bring a pair of shorts – but don’t worry, if you forget to bring a change of clothing, we will provide you with appropriate attire.

Q) How do I pay for my treatments?
A) We require payment upon completion of each treatment. We accept cash, cheques, Interac, Visa, and MasterCard. Upon payment, we will provide you with an appropriate receipt so you can claim the treatment under your extended health care plan.

Q) What is the clinic’s cancellation policy?
A) Tower Chiropractic & Massage requires 24-hour notice for appointment cancellations. Missed appointments, or appointments canceled without 24-hour notice, will be charged 100% of the scheduled service fee.

Q) Do treatments hurt?
A) If your injury or condition is already painful, any work performed in the area may produce some discomfort. The tissue and nerves around your injury are irritated and are therefore sensitive to pressure and movement. Although treatments may produce some initial discomfort, our goal is to get you out of pain and get you moving again.

Q) How many treatments do I need?
A) Your therapeutic treatment plan is based on your medical history and a physical examination of your condition. Each case is unique, and it is important to remember that many variables determine how quickly, and to what extent, your injury will heal.

Q) I don’t remember doing anything traumatic: how did this injury occur?
A) Broadly speaking, micro trauma and macro trauma are the two types of injuries you might sustain. An example of macro trauma is slipping on ice and landing on your back; whereas micro trauma is brought on by repetitive movements which lead to “micro” tears in tissue. You may not remember doing anything specific that has lead to an injury; the pain you are experiencing may be due to an accumulation of small, undetectable trauma.

Q) What kind of education and training do chiropractors have?
A) Chiropractors are educated as primary contact health care practitioners, with an emphasis on neuro-musculo-skeletal diagnosis and treatment. Chiropractic education focuses on three central areas: biological and health sciences, specialized training in chiropractic procedures, and extensive clinical training. In order to practice in Canada, chiropractors must have a minimum of 7 years post-secondary education, including no less than 4,500 hours of classroom and clinical instruction at an institution approved by the Council on Chiropractic Education Canada.

Q) How is a chiropractic adjustment performed?
A) A chiropractic adjustment is a manual procedure that utilizes highly refined skills. The chiropractor typically uses his or her hands to manipulate the joints of the body in order to reduce pain, and restore or enhance joint function. Each procedure is adapted to suit the needs of the patient. For example, techniques are modified when treating children, pregnant women, elite athletes and older patients. Manipulation is a highly controlled procedure which rarely causes discomfort and patients often note positive changes in their symptoms immediately following treatment. However, as this is a manually applied therapy, patients may sometimes experience mild soreness for 12 to 48 hours following treatment.

Q) Are chiropractic adjustments safe?
A) Chiropractic adjustments are a non-invasive approach to common musculoskeletal conditions such as headache, neck and back pain. As such, it is a low-risk therapy and complications arising from adjustments are rare. In extremely rare situations, there is a possibility that manipulation of the upper neck may contribute to a stroke, but no causative data exists. The risk is probably no greater than the risk from natural neck movements such as turning your head to back up when driving. Medical literature estimates the risk of having a stroke that may be related to chiropractic treatments, to be anywhere from 1 in 1 million, to 1 in 2.85 million. In fact, the risk of serious complications from the use of anti-inflammatories for neck pain is greater than the slight risk of injury from chiropractic manipulation. Chiropractors are trained to recognize risk factors in patients, and treatments are not performed when there is an identified risk.

Q) Why is there a popping sound when a joint is adjusted?
A) An adjustment of a joint may result in the release of a gas bubble between the joints. This makes a popping sound – just like when you “crack” your knuckles. It is not painful. The sound is caused by the change of pressure within the joint which results in gas bubbles being released.

Q) Does chiropractic treatment require X-rays?
A) X-rays can provide vital information to help determine a diagnosis but they are not required in every case.

Q) Can chiropractic treatment provide a preventative function?
A) Clinical experience suggests that individuals with chronic conditions such as degenerative joint disease (osteoarthritis) or recurrent neck pain, back pain, or headaches, may experience less frequent and less severe symptoms when under regular chiropractic care. This also applies to individuals in highly stressful situations, and those who experience repetitive physical and postural strain from their daily activities. Whether ongoing chiropractic treatment can prevent back pain from occurring, or prevent a previous condition from re-occurring, requires further study.

Q) Is chiropractic care really scientific?
A) Broadly speaking, micro trauma and macro trauma are the two types of injuries you might sustain. An example of macro trauma is slipping on ice and landing on your back; whereas micro trauma is brought on by repetitive movements which lead to “micro” tears in tissue. You may not remember doing anything specific that has lead to an injury; the pain you are experiencing may be due to an accumulation of small, undetectable trauma.

Q) What is Functional Myofascial Release (FMR)?
A) FMR therapy is a non-invasive, soft tissue treatment that breaks down scar tissue which causes stiffness, weakness, pain, numbness and dysfunction in the body. It is used as a treatment for repetitive strain injuries, muscular imbalances, and the improvement of athletic performance. FMR works especially well in conjunction with chiropractic treatment to correct injuries and imbalances, speed the recovery process, and amplify results.

Q) Who can benefit from FMR?
A) Anyone who suffers from repetitive strain injury – from the athlete to the office worker, to the home keeper (see full list below). FMR is also an effective tool for improving athletic and sports performance.

Q) What is the difference between FMR and massage therapy?
A) FMR is not massage therapy. Massage therapy is able to aid in rehabilitating physical injuries by acting directly upon the muscular, nervous, and circulatory systems. FMR and massage therapy work extremely well together, with each serving different functions. By itself, massage therapy does not effectively address issues related to tissue adhesions. FMR and chiropractic care also work well together. Chiropractic treatment works well to release joint restrictions, but these restrictions often return if the original, underlying soft-tissue problems go unaddressed.

Massage Therapy FAQs (click to reveal answer)

Q) What should I expect during my first Massage Therapy appointment?
A) Your massage therapist will ask you to fill out a health history form. Next, the therapist will ask you general questions to establish what areas you would like worked on, if there are any conditions needing to be addressed and to determine if massage is appropriate for you. Your massage therapist may perform certain tests to evaluate your condition.

Q) Where will my massage appointment take place?
A) Your massage session will take place in a warm, comfortable room. Soft music may be played to help you relax. You will lie on a table specially designed for your comfort.

Q) What do I wear during the massage?
A) Depending on the massage technique used by your therapist, you may or may not need to undress. For a full body massage, most people undress completely. However, you may choose to wear underwear. Your massage therapist will give you privacy to undress, and you will be covered with a sheet at all times except the area being worked on.

Q) What do I do during a massage therapy treatment?
A) Make yourself comfortable. If your therapist wants you to adjust your position, she or he will either move you or will ask you to move as needed. Otherwise, change your position anytime to make yourself more comfortable. Many people close their eyes and relax completely during a session; others prefer to talk. It’s up to you. It is your massage, and whatever feels natural to you is the best way to relax. Do not hesitate to ask questions at any time.

Q) How will a massage feel?
A) This depends on the techniques used. We use a form of Swedish massage, which is often a baseline for practitioners. Your session may start with broad, flowing strokes (effleurage) that help calm your nervous system and relax exterior muscle tension. As your body becomes relaxed, pressure will gradually be increased to relax specific areas and relieve areas of muscular tension. Do not hesitate to ask questions or mention if you feel any discomfort so that the massage therapist can use another approach or technique.

Q) How long will a massage appointment last?
A) The average full-body massage lasts approximately one hour. A half-hour appointment only allows time for a partial massage session, such as neck and shoulders, back or legs and feet. Many people prefer a 60- to 90-minute session for optimal relaxation. Always allow relaxation time prior to and after the session.

Q) How will I feel after the massage?
A) Most people feel very relaxed. Some experience freedom from long-term aches and pains developed from tension or repetitive activity. After an initial period of feeling slowed down, people often experience increased energy, heightened awareness, and greater productivity, which can last for days. Some people will also feel like they have had a real workout, and may be sore for a day or two. This therapeutic pain should be followed by a deeper relaxed tissue state. Having a hot bath (especially with Epsom salts) will help avoid this painful period after a deep tissue massage. Finally, since toxins are released from soft tissues during massage, it is recommended you drink plenty of water following your treatment.

Q) What kind of lotion or oil do you put on my skin?
A) We use a lotion called Myo-ther, a professional massage lotion made in Canada. It is odorless and hypoallergenic with a neutral pH level. It is also water-soluble, which means it will not stain our linens or your clothing.

Q) How often should I have a massage?
A) The frequency of treatments is dependent on the goal you are trying to reach and the severity of your condition. A client being treated for injuries as a result of a motor vehicle accident may benefit most from bi-weekly treatments for 2 or 3 weeks, and then weekly treatments for another 2 or 3 weeks. The average frequency for maintenance therapy is every 3 to 4 weeks, while some people prefer weekly massage.

Q) Is massage therapy covered by Alberta Health Care?
A) Massage therapy is not covered by Alberta Health Care. Most extended health plans do cover massage therapy but vary in the amount covered. Please check your health care plan. The federal Government also offers coverage for members of the RCMP and war veterans through Veterans Affairs.

If you have a question that is not answered above, please do not hesitate to call us at (403) 263-7477 or to contact us using our handy web contact form.


The entire team at Tower Chiropractic & Massage are looking forward to providing you with the highest caliber of care in Calgary’s Downtown Core.

Call us at (403) 263-7477 to request your appointment today!