FARGO-Matthew Christenson had rheumatoid arthritis, a chronic inflammatory disorder affecting joints, predominantly in the hands and feet, when he was a teenager. Doctors told him he was on his way to being disabled, so he took a final shot at relief and recovery by visiting a chiropractor. Though it may have been painful at times, Christenson said he's thankful because the experience led him to his current career.
Christenson is the owner and chiropractor of Dakota Clinic of Chiropractic, a clinic that opened June 1 at 5670 38th Ave. S. in Fargo.
The West Fargo native had his own practice in western Texas for six years, but he ultimately wanted to come back to treat his friends and neighbors.
"I'm just grateful to be in the community I grew up in serving those I know best," Christenson said. "My goal is to help people through chiropractic like chiropractic helped me. It essentially gave me my life back."
Christenson graduated as a pre-chiropractic major from North Dakota State University and earned his doctorate of chiropractic from Northwestern Health Sciences University in Bloomington, Minn. He's licenced by the National Board of Chiropractic Examiners and by the North Dakota state board.
Dakota Clinic of Chiropractic is also a certified Fibromyalgia Center of America.
"Fibromyalgia patients usually suffer a lot," said Christenson, whose mother had fibromyalgia. "We have a heart for helping them. People have this lower back pain wherever you go."
He built his practice by giving community talks, lectures and screenings. He's already received several referrals and is booked out for weeks.
Christenson, who also helps other chiropractors start their businesses, said he enjoys running the business. He said his biggest challenge is getting across to potential clients what chiropractic is capable of and how he can help their health.
"It helped me when nothing else could," Christenson said. "For me, that's why I wanted to be a chiropractor. That's why everything in my being went toward this and helping others."
To Christenson, the nervous system is everything because if it's not healthy it can cause lower back pain or several other types of pain. He said the whole body suffers when the spine and nervous system aren't healthy.
Christenson said he hopes to educate people so they start caring for themselves on their own time.
"Our goal is to just help people live better, healthier lives they were created to live," Christenson said. "I love what I do. If you love what you do, there's speed bumps, but you figure out a way to deal with them. When you're convicted and confident in something, it doesn't feel like work to me. I love serving others."
What: Dakota Clinic of Chiropractic
Where: 5670 38th Avenue South Suite B, Fargo
Contact: (701) 566-5455