Are you familiar with the major complementary therapies for pain and relaxation? The four most common are chiropractic and physical therapy, and the more alternative treatments of massage and Reiki. But what exactly are they? The best way to understand the differences between chiropractic vs. physical therapy, as well as massage and Reiki, and to determine which would be most effective for your specific needs is to explore each one individually, look at the processes, and the way they work on individual physiology.

Chiropractic vs. physical therapy

Both chiropractors and physical therapists work with patients who suffer from an injury or pain from a chronic condition, but what are the major differences between chiropractic and physical therapy? And what roles can these treatments play in your recovery?

Your choice between chiropractic vs. physical therapy doesn’t have to be either/or. The two treatments often work well in conjunction. For a brief overview of chiropractic vs. physical therapy:

  • A chiropractor is a specialist who diagnoses and treats injuries and illnesses of the musculoskeletal system that cause problems with body mechanics. Chiropractors are trained in the science of body manipulation. They can adjust joints and bones to put our bodies back into alignment. This can help improve overall day-to-day functions. They can also work with you to develop a holistic treatment plan that may include a healthy eating regimen, medication, and relaxation.
  • A physical therapist assists patients with recovery after an illness or injury and helps restore function and mobility. Physical therapists work with a patient to restore normal mobility through exercises that strengthen muscles and allow for the proper range of motion. They may also utilize massage and hydrotherapy depending on the extent of the patient’s injury.

Both practitioners receive extensive education and certifications in their specialties. They cannot prescribe medications, however, and often their services are used in conjunction with other medical practices. Whether you choose chiropractic vs. physical therapy will be largely based on your specific injury and requirements. Let’s learn more about both chiropractic and physical therapy.

Chiropractic Vs. Physical Therapy, Massage, And Reiki | PainDoctor.com

What is chiropractic care?

In general, chiropractors focus on the manipulation of the skeletal muscle systems to put the body back into natural alignment and relieve pain and tension. It isn’t so much an alternative treatment as it is considered complementary to many forms of traditional medicine. Chiropractors are highly trained doctors who have attended both undergraduate and chiropractic graduate school and have specialized in the way the body fits together. They have also been trained to use their hands to apply pressure to the body to help realign anything that has worked itself out of place.

About 22% of adults in the United States visit a chiropractor each year. The manipulation performed by a trained chiropractor helps relieve tension and restore mobility for individuals suffering from chronic pain conditions. Chiropractic care does have risks, usually involving improper manipulation, but these instances are rare and the overall practice is considered safe and effective for most people. Patients living with chronic back pain, headaches, neck pain, osteoarthritis, and even fibromyalgia have found relief through chiropractic care.

What are the benefits of chiropractic care?

Chiropractic care is a proven way to support overall wellness. The basic belief of chiropractic care is that the body can often heal itself with minimal interventions. Chiropractors use non-invasive, outpatient techniques to correct issues in the support systems of the body: the musculoskeletal and nervous systems. This leads to lessened pain and disability, which lowers the need for pain medication or surgery.

In fact, one