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Clinic History

Back to Health Wellness Center is the LaPorte's longest serving chiropractic clinic (established in 1969 as Applegate Clinic of Chiropractic) and is dedicated to providing quality chiropractic healthcare services to the families of LaPorte County.

Dr. Matthew Kirkham and Dr. Dale Applegate - with nearly 60 years of combined experience - are committed to providing the most advanced and affordable natural healthcare to the LaPorte community - including chiropractic care, rehabilitative therapy, massage therapy, spinal decompression, as well as weight lost and nutritional counseling.

History of Chiropractic

The history of chiropractic dates all the way back to ancient China and Greece, where writings from 2600-1500 BC discuss spinal manipulation and the adjustment of extremities to relieve back pain. Hippocrates, the ancient Greek physician known as the "father of medicine", wrote in depth about the health benefits of spinal manipulatoin. In one of his texts, he wrote "Look well to the spine for the cause of disease."

Chiropractic, as we know it today came, to the United States in September 1895. Dr Daniel David Palmer, a successful healthcare provider, was talking to a janitor named Harvey Lillard, who had been deaf for several hears. Mr. Lillard told Dr. Palmer that 17 years prior, he had felt something "crack" in his back while he was working. After that he began to lose his hearing.

After their conversation, Dr. Palmer performed an examination of the janitor's spine and found what he diagnosed as a misaligned vertebra. It was Dr. Palmer's theory that, if the vertebra had "popped" out of place and caused deafness, it was possible that realignment could correct this problem. Mr. Lillard agreed to test Dr. Palmer's theory and laid face down along a couple of office chairs and then he quickly thrust the vertebra back into position, realigning the spine. Amazingly, the vertebra slid back into place relatively easily and, within a short period of time, Mr. Lillard began to regain his hearing. Isn't it amazing that the very first chiropractic adjustment corrected a hearing problem and had nothing to do with back pain!

History of Applegate Clinic of Chiropractic

Two years after graduating from Palmer College of Chiropractic in Davenport, Iowa, in 1967, Dr. Dale Applegate came to LaPorte, Indiana to begin his chiropractic career. He opened his first practice at 1022 Indiana Avenue in downtown LaPorte and quickly became the most sought after chiropractor in Northwest Indiana. His practice grew so large that he quickly outgrew his facility and needed to move to a larger location. He was able to work with renowned architects who at the time were just finishing up the brand new LaPorte Hospital on Lincolnway where it currently still stands. In 1978 the new facility for Applegate Clinic of Chiropractic was complete where it currently sits at 2504 Monroe Street accross from the Sagamore Center.

History of Back to Health Wellness Center

Over the 40 years that Applegate Clinic of Chiropractic was helping thousands of patients of the LaPorte community find better health naturally through chiropractic care, many associate chiropractic physicians were assisting Dr. Applegate. Well known Applegate Clinic associates were Dr. Tim Six, Dr. Bob Killingbeck and Dr. Robert Schiffman to name a few. In 1998, Dr. Matthew Kirkham joined Dr. Applegate and have been working together since that time. With almost 45 years of service under Dr. Applegate's belt, it was time to finally prepare for his retirement. In 2009, Dr. Kirkham purchased the Applegate Clinic and renamed it to Back to Health Wellness Center, which is continuing the tradition of providing specific Gonstead chiropractic care. Today Back to Health Wellness Center offers a wider range of services by assisting the chiropractic adjustment with massage therapy, physical therapy, nutritional counseling as well as an exceptional weight loss product line.

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