In Chiropractic there's about a million different techniques, all of which are beautiful in their own way but some are better than others at treating different conditions or different people. An easy example is that anyone with a neurological condition is best managed and treated by somebody who practices Functional Neurology (*cough*like me*cough*).
There are chiropractors who only adjust the first joint in the neck (NUCCA, HOI), and there are those of us who adjust everything including arms and legs. There are techniques that aim to uncover emotional roots to your problems (NET). There are techniques that don't "crack" at all (DNFT), and there are numerous techniques that incorporate the "cracking" (Diversified*, Gonstead, Pettibon)**. There are techniques in which the doctor uses tools to adjust the patient, rather than adjusting manually with their hands (Activator, Impulse). There are other techniques that use a very specific type of examination to determine where to adjust (Functional Neurology, AK, SOT).
*Diversified is the most commonly used chiropractic technique.
**On a side note, while most people think that the whole point of chiropractic is the crack, it is not always necessary to get the cavitation (cracking sound) when performing an adjustment.
In addition to the wide variety in chiropractic techniques, often times doctors will incorporate various non-chiropractic treatments into their office. For example, I use functional medicine, specialty lab testing, nutritional therapy, and supplements in my office. Sometimes I use K-Tape, but if you are looking for someone who is well-versed in the use of K-Tape for a particular athletic injury, I'll be the first to admit that I may not be the doctor who's best suited for your needs. Some offices do ultrasound, e-stim and PT in house, some (such as myself) do not. Sometimes finding the perfect office for you is a matter of finding the perfect combination of treatment modalities or clinicians.
Not only is there a wide variety in treatment methods, people may vibe differently with one doctor or office better than others. Let's face it, chiropractic can get pretty up close and personal, so you need to be completely comfortable with the person putting their hands on you. Listen to your gut and ditch the offices that make you feel at all uncomfortable (this applies to doctors offices, too).
However infrequently, it saddens me when people go to a chiropractor, don't enjoy their first experience, and write off the profession as a whole. As you can see there is a LOT of variety in chiropractic techniques, and probably even more variety in the types of people who perform those techniques. Perhaps those people who "tried chiropractic once" would really love another technique or another doctor if they gave it a chance.
If you or somebody you know is interested in working with a functional medicine doctor please call my office at (919) 238-4094 and see if we are the right fit for you. Infinity Holistic Healthcare is located in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, part of the Raleigh-Durham "triangle" area.