In the midst of his busy schedule, I have the good fortune to interview Dr. Theo from Light Chiropractic. Thank you Dr. Theo! All correspondences are via e-mail for speedier release. Instead of the usual run-of-the-mill questions you can find elsewhere on the Internet, I brought out some interesting questions to show more of a chiropractor’s personal side and with a focus on the local scene.
Want to know what type of patient annoy him? Read on to find out 🙂
Growing up as a kid you wanted to be…
If you are asking about what I wanted to be a kid, it was probably a super hero. I always want to be amazing and do something for the world. Batman was my favorite but Superman was always someone I wanted to be like. He saved people even when they weren’t thankful and even when they feared him. Most importantly what kept him going was his belief in humanity.
What made you decide to become a chiropractor?
I was going to a chiropractor at age 14 and my brother was going to school to become one. So at a very young age I knew I wanted to become a chiropractor. At that time, being a chiropractor was as close to becoming Superman as I can be.
If you were to describe what you do, you would compare it to…Why?
My job is to reconnect people to their bodies. In most cases in my practice people come to me with some type of pain. When there isn’t any kind of acute trauma, pain comes from higher needs within the body to function at a higher state. When I say acute trauma I mean things like burning your hands or in an auto accident. Most people associate all types of pain on this level.
If you were to compare my job to another profession you may consider me as a business consultant whose job is to develop strategies in a business that is failing. Usually the problem has little to do with money, the employees, the economy or even the customers. The problem has to do with the person who is running the company. Most people fail to see things that way and that is one of the reasons healthcare is in a crisis. Last time I checked disease is on the rise every year. It is funny I used to see myself as a body mechanic but after running a business and pretty much having success in many areas in my life. I began to see that the laws of life also applies in healing, business, family, and even on a spiritual level.
How does a patient’s first visit to your clinic be like?
We have a very straightforward simple process done on the first visit. First we take a history and they let me know the reason they are coming in. Then I let them know how their body serves their needs despite how much they are suffering. The simple cold hard truth of most peoples’ stories reflects that people put the needs of others or things ahead of themselves on a consistent level. The manifestation of symptoms varies from individual but the blueprint is usually a similar story. They put their families, jobs or friends ahead of themselves, and forget about helping themselves. The body always speaks in a language to get people to remember about themselves. Therefore we can consider symptoms as hidden gifts that have not been discovered. My duty as a chiropractor is to help people find that gift.
People have the audacity to blame their bodies for their pain when they usually cause it knowingly and unknowingly. An example would be someone who is working too hard and not resting enough. As a result, he or she develops a cold or flu.
Doctors with good intentions from all walks of life, regardless of what kind of doctor they are, have the sentiment to label these gifts with terminology such as degeneration, cancer, subluxation, depression and so on. In reality the very thing that is making your life “worst” is a cry out for your body to make a change for yourself. That internal desire for our bodies to really LIVE is always stronger than anything.
After I get them more connected, the adjustment happens and I ask them to return on subsequent visits. The frequency is determined every time on the situation.
Chiropractic has come a long way in Singapore and gained significant awareness here. Are there still misconceptions about what you do? If yes, what are those?
Those misconceptions are what I wrote in the previous answer, to name a few. My colleagues may be offended by my words but there isn’t a chiropractor that I know that will not deny that the body is designed perfectly and I would like to think that most people would agree that dis-ease is the absence of LIFE and HEALTH. Chiropractic develops strategies in life to express more life, more love, and more expression.
If any, what are the differences in managing between patients in the United States and in Singapore?
I used to see a difference but fundamentally there is not. Of course most people know about chiropractic in America but frankly speaking even if I were to practice in America, the work that I do on people is not something most people receive in America. If we are talking about working on structures in the spine, the work that defines me the most is the upper cervical work that I do. The upper cervical consist of the C1 (Atlas), C2 (Axis) and sometimes C0 (Occiput).
On top of it, the type of chiropractic that I have developed is very unique because I have combined certain techniques into one and I have made it my own. Most importantly the practice model that I work in is entirely different than what is taught in school and even what my outside mentors have taught me. So I’m at a point in my career where location or country does not make a difference because anyone, who comes to our practice, would get a different experience than what they would be used to.
What is the most rewarding part of your job?
Every aspect of my job is rewarding but I would say they mostly have to do with the things that cannot be measured. For starters, it would be me becoming a better human being, a better father, a better son to my parents. Having my practice has taught me a lot about life and ironically my best lessons have been from the people that I serve. So in other words, I learn from the people I serve more than they learn from me. This mindset has allowed me to be a constant student of life and it keeps me humble so I can discover more truths.
For my clients, it would have to be the people who make a deep connection within and they get a moment of enlightenment that brings a tear to their eyes. It does not happen to everyone but it has happened often enough to allow me to have more certainty and purpose. As far as “conditions”, it would be the situations when people are suffering from something medicine is unable to help them with, such as an auto-immune disease and the chiropractic care that I offer has helped them.
Patients who get your goat are those who…
Probably the most difficult clients are those that don’t have the patience to learn or gather the capacity to see beyond what their eyes can see. I believe this usually has to do with anger. What I would call primitive emotions such as anger and fear not only causes a variety of health problems; they also are the source of most of the world’s problems. Individuals that feel entitled are usually difficult people. I am a firm believer that no one ever owes anyone anything and everyone should be responsible for his or her own lives. The opposite of entitlement would be empowerment. My ideal client would be an individual who is already empowered or who wants to be.
The weirdest patient question you ever got was…
I have had some clients that were out of this world and too unbelievable to write about. But I had someone who came in for erectile dysfunction for a while. I did told him that his situation had to do with age and not enough exercise. Chiropractic can bring out more life in someone but unless they start resting more, eating better, exercising and waking up inspired every morning, their prospects of living amazing lives are slim.
Dr. Theo has been practising chiropractic in Singapore since 2008. His unique perspective to health and life often gets people thinking about their bodies as something that are meant to serve their lives instead of inhibiting them. On his spare time he likes to read books and listen to varies speakers talk about human potential. The best part of his job is to share his knowledge with the people that he comes in contact with. He also really loves to adjust spines and even though he has over a decade of experience, he still enjoys going to seminars to learn more.
My Main Takeaway Lesson
Sharon: What and how much you give to life, life gives the same back to you. If you treat your body well, it will reward you. You may not see it now, but you will know in the future. Don’t wait too late to remember about your health!
Interview with a Chiropractor – Dr. Theo Kieu. "Dis-ease is the absence of LIFE and HEALTH" Pl retweet.… http://t.co/2IMc4PpUyW
— Sharon Lee (@sharonleesg) April 9, 2015