When each of Samantha Murphy’s children were only a few hours old, she made their first chiropractic adjustments.
If your son is not doing well, he will ask for an adjustment while other children ask for a blanket or favorite toy.
With her new Ludington office, Shore Family Chiropractic, Murphy hopes to share her family’s spinal care for free.
“It’s something I want for people because … I’ve seen it work very well for my family too,” she said on an exercise ball in her Washington Street office.
Murphy opened the practice in early July. She runs it as a “one-woman show”, takes care of reception and treats each patient in her own practice.
After graduating from Logan University, a private chiropractic university in Missouri, Murphy worked at a Spring Lake chiropractic clinic for four years.
She and her husband have spent the last year taking day trips across the state and settling in Ludington for its “laid back feel up north.” They decided it would be a good place to raise their 3 year old son Cole and their nearly 6 month old daughter Claire.
She said her practice is unique for how “invested” she is in her patients beyond her appointment. She has books and magazines in her office on alternatives to common practices, such as using a midwife in childbirth, and wants to be “an open book to other natural pathways.”
Murphy stated that chiropractors ensure that the thorns are “properly aligned” so that the “nervous system can do its job”.
For example, if your lower back is “not moving properly,” it will prevent “proper communication” with that area, she said. This could lead to symptoms ranging from lower back pain to digestive problems and even leg pain, she said.
Murphy said she’s used to people saying it sounds like hocus-pocus. Even she sometimes catches herself referring to doctors as “normal doctors.” But she is convinced that chiropractic, along with other alternative health practices, is on the way to mainstream.
“We get a lot of people coming in and we are their last effort,” she said. “Indeed, given the stress in the world, we have seen people turn to more natural ways to benefit their health.”
While treating the ailments of back and neck pain that chiropractors are often associated with, she is also “very passionate” about pregnancy and child care. She said she underwent chiropractic adjustments during both of her pregnancies.
“It can help the mother’s body deal with this stress … and just keep her in better shape so the baby can get well,” Murphy said. “Just because you’re pregnant doesn’t mean you have to feel uncomfortable.”
She said she looked after at least 10 mothers, many of them examples of what she called a “COVID baby boom” in the previous practice she worked in Spring Lake. In her Ludington office, she has pillows for pregnant mothers that can be placed on their stomachs.
She hopes to expand her practice into a facility that offers more than just chiropractic care. She envisions a place where women can get prenatal massages, counseling on postpartum depression, and other resources.
For now, however, she is taking the time to learn about the needs of the Ludington community.
“It’s a lot to be out there meeting people,” she said.