Chiropractic Care or Physical Therapy?
Pain and injuries can bring uncertainty about where to seek relief. Chiropractic care is usually associated with back pain, while physical therapy can be associated with rehabilitation. Although both treat pain and injuries, both are different in the methods of treatment and expertise.
Chiropractic care focuses on the musculoskeletal system and central nervous system while physical therapy focuses on treatment that restores mobility, balance and strength. Chiropractic care is usually the go-to for the following:
- Back pain
- Neck pain
- Joint pain
- Arm pain
- Leg pain
Physical therapy on the other hand is more commonly selected for:
Chiropractic treatment focuses on pinpointing subluxations and realigning the vertebrae, which can affect the central nervous system in a negative way. Chiropractors have an extensive knowledge of the musculoskeletal system, thus treatment revolves around soft tissue mobilization and joint adjustment. Every patient is different and requires an individual treatment plan, plus stretches or exercises to do at home, if necessary. One of the more common chiropractic treatments is spinal manipulation which helps restore mobility and decrease muscle tightness.
Physical therapy uses stretching, hot/cold methods, and exercises to improve mobilization. Physical therapists are big on preventative maintenance of the body and will usually provide fitness and nutritional advice. Chiropractors can too, but since physical therapy focuses on aging and injury rehabilitation, good nutrition and fitness advice is usually more common in their field. Physical therapists have an extensive knowledge of human movement and how to restore it by using manual therapy, joint mobilization, soft tissue mobilization, cardiovascular rehabilitation, and muscle coordination.
The other difference between the two is education background. Depending on their pace, a chiropractor will spend about six to eight years in school to obtain their license. A physical therapist must spend seven years in school for theirs.
As mentioned, both are efficient in treating pain and for injury rehabilitation. To help decide which will better suit your needs you can always get a consultation. Here at AV Chiropractic we have a combined 30 years of experience and have served thousands of patients. Schedule a consultation today!