The sheer love of helping people is what drove Dr. David Wurth, or Dr. Dave, of Wurth Chiropractic Center to leave the “glamourous life” of farming in Iowa to start his own chiropractic practice and eventually relocate to Champaign. Since opening in 2020, Dr. Dave has carved out a place for himself amongst his peers by specializing in workplace ailments with treatment centered on supportive care. With an emphasis on the human side of healthcare, Dr. Dave wants his patients to know he is ready to help you. We were lucky enough to sit down with Dr. Dave to discuss his journey from driving tractors in the farmlands of Iowa to owning a new business in downtown Champaign.
Tell us about yourself. What led you to becoming a chiropractor?
First and foremost, I think I am one of those guys who has always wanted to help people. I grew up on a farm and we had neighbors. Whether you wanted to call it volunteering, or I was volunteered by my parents to help my neighbors, that’s what I did, and I enjoyed it. When I got out of high school, I farmed for five years, then the economy tanked in the mid-eighties, and I had to find something else to do. I knew I wanted to help people.
I was about six or seven months into college, and I didn’t know what direction to take. I ended up talking to a chiropractor when I had headache and he adjusted me and started talking to me about being chiropractor. He described to me how the spine worked and how the nerves worked. He told me that I should think about becoming a chiropractor. What did I know about being a doctor? He advised that I should investigate what classes to take to get into Palmer [College of Chiropractic] — that’s where chiropractic practice got started, in Davenport, Iowa. The classes that I needed to take to get into Palmer were the same classes I needed to take to graduate from any college. So, I thought, OK, here’s my path. I was taking my first step on a 10,000-mile journey.
I found myself in Palmer. I learned about how the body worked in detail. I found out about the fine tuning and alignment of the spine and, with that, discovered how I could help my patients.
When I got out of chiropractic college, I started my first associateship with some doctors in Freeport, Illinois, of all places, and wound up with a wonderful doctor, Dr. Randy David. I was his first associate. He had a low back and leg pain clinic and I worked there with him for six years. We worked on a lot of cases, and, during those six years, we had a 98% success rate.
You started your Champaign practice in 2020. What made you choose Champaign to relocate a business in?
I went back to Iowa to help my mom and dad, which I did for 23 years while also having a practice in Marcus. The farming economy started to change greatly over that time, and people couldn’t bring their next generation up with them. By nature, we didn’t see an influx of younger people there, so we decided that we had to move.
We had to choose somewhere with a diverse economy and economic growth. We did our research and Champaign was the top growing city in Illinois and had a lot of opportunities. The University [of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign] meant that this was an educated community and we liked that.
We just started our third year here as of as of August 3rd and we continue to have been impressed with the Champaign-Urbana community. We love the people here. We love diversity, and knowledge is everywhere. Ideas flow here, and you can see it kind of out loud. If you have that much knowledge and the ability to put that knowledge to work, then that’s where we wanted to be, and we’re thankful to be here.
You specialize in workplace ailments. What are those exactly, what causes them and how can you help alleviate them?
Wrist and neck pain, arm pain comes from our computers, electronic devices, and phones. When we sit to use the computer, we’re not only affecting the neck and the arms, now we’re affecting the lower back and the legs. Prolonged sitting is devastating on the lower back. It puts abnormal pressures up to four or five times what the load is supposed to be. The constant leaning forward, shoulders hunched, looking at the phone or looking or typing on a computer in a seated position puts pressure on the joints and the discs in the neck – everything gets affected.
What I do as a chiropractor is to get to the source of the pain. The spine always comes first, that’s where the nerve irritation is. The brain is a control center and communicates to the rest of the body through the spinal cord. From the spinal cord, we have 32 pairs of nerves that go out and intersect with every single cell in the body and, most importantly, every organ of the body. If that communication somehow gets interrupted those systems don’t function at 100%.
As a chiropractor, I then look at the patient, gather the information of what they are going through, what they’re experiencing, do my evaluations, do my exam, do my x-rays, and I find out in their spine what areas are misaligned. Next, my job is to correct that through a series of adjustments to help stabilize the muscles, tendons, and ligaments, which are the support structures of the spine. So, we get the patient out of crisis mode into what we call supportive mode. People like to call it maintenance care. I don’t like that term. It is not maintenance. Maintenance means you’re just trying to keep it where it is. What I do is supportive care because we work to support the better position. The body responds positively to supportive care.
What do you do in your free time outside of work?
I like being outside. I like to bike and travel. You’ll see (my wife and I) on the streets in the quieter neighborhoods. We’ll bike during the afternoon. We visit nature preserves and we like to grill. We’ll bring charcoal, hot dogs and burgers or steaks and we’ll make a day of it.
Is there anything else you would like to share with our readers?
I’m empathetic with anybody who comes through our doors with any kind pain: lower back problems, neck problems or even their big toe. I’ve experienced it and I’ve gone through pretty much every (type of pain) at one point or another in my life. I know what it’s like to feel that constant pain or that constant ailment that you just can’t seem to get over without some sort of support, some sort of help. My unique technique is offering human care when you come into my office.