Since many patients aren't naturally curious about health to ask questions, you might be inclined to use their silence as an opportunity to pontificate about some aspect of chiropractic.
Maybe you find the silence uncomfortable.
Or see it as a chance to "educate" the patient with non-consensual conversation.
After all, the thinking goes, you might say something that would cause the penny to drop and inspire patients to abandon their wrongheaded beliefs.
It's rarely effective.
If you want to create the possibility of change, you're likely to get better results by what you ask--rather than what you say.
That means being genuinely curious about how they see their body. Being authentically interested in their worldview; how they came to form their beliefs.
"That's fascinating," you remark. "Would you be interested in a different explanation?"
Not better. Not the "correct" explanation. Different.
The objective is to create dialogue, not monologue.
Bill Esteb has been a chiropractic patient and advocate since 1981. He is the creative director of Patient Media and the co-founder of Perfect Patients. He’s been a regular speaker at chiropractic gatherings since 1985. His 12 books explore the doctor/patient relationship from a patient's point of view. His chiropractic blog, in-office consultations, patient focus groups and consulting calls have helped hundreds of chiropractors around the world. Since 1999 Monday Morning Motivation has been emailed to over 10,000 subscribers each week.