When To Choose Physiotherapy or Chiropractic

PHYSIOTHERAPY VS CHIROPRACTIC

Deciding between physiotherapy and chiropractic care depends on your specific condition, and the recommendations of healthcare professionals. Here’s a general guideline:

  1. Physiotherapy (Physical Therapy):
    • Ideal for a wide range of musculoskeletal conditions, sports injuries, and post-surgery rehabilitation.
    • One situation when you should choose physiotherapy over chiropractic is post-surgical rehab. Most physiotherapy clinics have the necessary equipment that most chiropractic clinics do not to properly rehabilitate you. Physiotherapist are generally better trained to handle post-surgical rehabilitation.
    • Focuses on improving mobility, function, and quality of life through exercises, manual therapy, and modalities like ultrasound, laser or electrical stimulation. Most physiotherapists do not adjust the spine or other joints of the body, so if you need this chiropractic is a must.
    • Physiotherapists often work on strengthening muscles, improving flexibility, and correcting movement patterns to prevent future injuries.
  2. Chiropractic Care:
    • Suitable for conditions related to the spine, joints, and nervous system, such as back pain, neck pain, headaches, and sciatica. In my practice I also help conditions involving the joints of the extremities, such as shoulder, elbow, wrist and hand injuries. I also help with hip, knee, ankle and foot problems.
    • Primarily involves manual adjustments or manipulations to restore alignment and mobility in the spine and other joints in order to restore optimal nervous system function and relieve pain.  In my office I also use electrical stimulation, Accu-o-matic, moist heat and ice when helpful.
    • Chiropractors also use exercise when useful to help you recover and prevent future injuries.
    • Chiropractors often focus on the relationship between the spine and the nervous system, since spinal dysfunctions (subluxations) can cause various health issues and pain.

Here are some considerations to help you choose:

  • Diagnosis: You can see a chiropractor right from the start as they are able to diagnose your condition. The chiropractor will then recommend the best course of action.
  • Condition Severity: For severe or acute conditions, such as fractures or severe sprains, you might initially require medical attention before starting physiotherapy or chiropractic care.  Other severe or acute conditions such as sever back pain or a disc herniation can be seen right away by either a physiotherapist or a chiropractor.
  • Cost and Insurance Coverage: Check your insurance coverage and consider the cost of treatment. Physiotherapy is about twice the cost of chiropractic care per visit. Usually there is better coverage for physiotherapy in most plans. You usually require a prescription from your medical doctor to be covered for physiotherapy. Most plans also cover chiropractic care up to $500.00 per year in 2024 (without a prescription). It is best to check your plan to know what you can afford. Only you can decide what your health is worth.
  • Collaborative Approach: In some cases, a combination of physiotherapy and chiropractic care, along with other treatments like massage therapy or acupuncture, may provide the best results. Discussing this possibility with healthcare providers can help create a comprehensive treatment plan.

Ultimately, the choice between physiotherapy and chiropractic care should be made based on your specific needs, and the advice of healthcare professionals.

One thought on “When To Choose Physiotherapy or Chiropractic”

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