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Bench Seating in the Atlas Specific Office


What  is upper cervical chiropractic care?

Chiropractic care is a healthcare discipline that focuses on diagnosing and treating musculoskeletal and nervous system disorders, primarily through manual adjustments and other non-invasive techniques.

What conditions can upper cervical chiropractors treat?

Upper cervical chiropractors can treat a wide range of conditions, including back pain, neck pain, headaches, sciatica, joint pain, and more. They also help with overall wellness and preventive care. See our Conditions We Treat page for more information.

What is a Subluxation?

Simply put, a Subluxation is when either the first or second bone (atlas or axis) in the neck has moved out of place three-dimensionally, causing pressure and torsion on the brainstem and nervous system. The cascade effect due to a Subluxation can be numerous, but more importantly, this causes an interference in the communication between the brain and the body, not allowing the system as a whole to function optimally. (Sub=lack of, Lux=light)

What should I expect during my first visit to a chiropractor?

The first visit is about 45 minutes long, during which your history and exam take place. The exam includes, but is not limited to: range of motion testing, muscle strength testing, manual muscle testing, static and motion palpation, orthopedic testing, basic neurological testing, postural analysis, infrared thermography of the brainstem to evaluate brainstem function, x-rays and vital signs. It is on your next visit that we will review our findings with you, including a detailed discussion about your x-rays, and the first adjustment will take place.

Will the doctor adjust me on my first visit?

Due to the specific nature of the adjustment, the doctors must analyze and measure your x-rays before any adjustment can take place. The x-ray analysis takes about 30 minutes to complete, and the doctors can always have these finished by the next day they are in the office. Your atlas and axis are the bones that surround the brainstem, which is a very delicate and vital area to work with; there cannot be any guessing about how to adjust you. Everyone’s a little different.

Rarely, we will have a client come come back the same day for their first adjustment depending on circumstances and severity of conditions.

Mamas and babies are almost ALWAYS worked on during their first visit.

What can I expect after my first chiropractic adjustment?

Everyone tends to react differently to the first adjustment. Some will tend to feel a little sore at first, but this is a different kind of soreness than before. Since the nervous system is re-calibrating, it will activate different muscle fibers in order to try and hold the adjustment and realign the spine on its own. We recommend getting plenty of fluids, applying ice (not heat) if necessary, and relaxing that first day after the adjustment. We like to give the first adjustment a few days to settle in before we have you come back to get re-checked. This allows us to see how well the adjustment holds.

Does your office require X-rays? Why?

With the exception of young children, yes. Since the skin in the neck is so thin, there is very little radiation that penetrates through in order to see the bones. Upper Cervical Doctors take specialized x-rays in order to determine a patient’s listing. This listing determines the type of adjustment the patient needs in order to clear out their subluxation. X-rays allow us to avoid any guessing as to how to correct your subluxation. All x-rays are developed digitally to eliminate the use of film and chemicals. You will receive a copy of your x-rays upon request at no additional cost.

How much will my first visit cost? What about going forward?

Your exam and upper cervical-specific chiropractic x-rays are $250.00. Remember, this is broken into two appointments! After your first adjustment (on your second visit), the doctors will check to see how your body responded and determine if this is the proper technique and office for you. They will then create a tailor-made care plan for your ongoing care. The cost can vary depending on the amount of care. We also offer Care Credit if need be.

Does upper cervical chiropractic
care hurt?

Considering there is no torquing or twisting of the neck, this adjustment can be very easy to accept. It is a very fast adjustment though, and some people can be a little startled for the first one, but almost always comment about how easy it actually was.

Is upper cervical chiropractic care safe?

Yes, when performed by a qualified and licensed chiropractor, upper cervical chiropractic care is generally considered safe and effective. Upper cervical chiropractors undergo extensive training to ensure patient safety.

Does Atlas Specific accept insurance What about Medicare?

Atlas Specific does NOT accept insurance, but we are more than happy to provide you with a super receipt to submit to your insurance company for reimbursement.

We DO accept MedPay for all car accident cases.

Our office does not bill Medicare. We apologize for this inconvenience.

Will the doctor adjust more than my cervical spine?

Although our doctors specialize in Upper Cervical Specific Chiropractic, they are also trained, certified, and excel in traditional full spine Chiropractic. Our doctors start with C1 and C2, and when necessary, they will address other parts of the spine, but this is rare since Upper Cervical Specific Chiropractic tends to address the whole spine through one adjustment. If it turns out that you primarily need full spine adjustments, we are happy to work through those needs with full spine Chiropractic.

How is Atlas Specific Chiropractic different from other chiropractors I've seen?

There are two main differences in our office. We use objective measures to determine if you NEED an adjustment, rather than simply adjusting you every time. (Our goal is to get you to a place where you no longer need adjustments.) Secondly, we don’t twist or torque the neck during adjustments. Our methods are gentle and non-invasive, and you will rest after the adjustment in our relaxation suite to allow the adjustment to hold longer.

How long does it take to see results from chiropractic treatment?

After your first adjustment, the doctor will have a more clear idea of what length of care will be necessary for you. The first month is typically when you will experience a major change in symptoms, but our main goal ultimately is to have you start holding the chiropractic adjustment as soon as possible so that your body can start the healing process.

I’m pregnant, is it okay to see a Chiropractor?

Absolutely! Our doctors recommend Chiropractic care throughout pregnancy in order to help you stay comfortable and to allow the proper room for your child to grow healthy and happy.

I’ve been in an auto accident. Can Upper Cervical Specific Chiropractic help me?

Absolutely. Car accidents are a very difficult trauma to heal from and Upper Cervical Specific Chiropractic is a phenomenal way to help heal and get back to normal life as soon as possible. A 5 mph fender bender is the equivalent of a 30 mph car accident when it comes to how the body absorbs the forces of that accident. It is always a smart thing to at least come in and get assessed by one of the doctors immediately after your accident.

How old does my child need to be before I take them to a Chiropractor?

Considering that birth is the first major trauma that you endure, we would like to remove any interference as early as possible to help you live your life to your fullest potential. We pride ourselves on our work with newborns and children. It is a passion of our doctors, and is always an honor to have the opportunity to work with your children.

For more information on Chiropractic and children, please visit

How many doctors are in the office?

We currently have 2 doctors in the office. Dr. Timothy Dugas and Dr. Danielle Donarski.

Not sure Atlas Specific is the right place for you?

Well, we want to know too! Schedule a FREE consultation, and let's find out!

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I've been seeing Dr. Tim for 5 months for issues related to a multiple sclerosis diagnosis. I feel better both physically and mentally.


I went in for the improvement in strength and balance which I have experienced. What I didn't expect was the improvement in energy and positivity. I truly feel I have a strong base to build further healing on.


I could have never reached this point without the expertise and kindness of Dr. Tim and Mellissa. I'm excited to see where we go from here.

Amy S.

Upper Cervical Patient

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