You have been hearing a lot of people talking about how good their chiropractors and physiotherapists in terms of relieving their back aches, and shoulder and neck pains. If you listen more intently on what they are saying, you get the impression that chiropractors and physical therapists are one and the same. Unfortunately, they are not.
Establishing the Common Ground
Before you can appreciate the differences between a chiropractor and a physical therapist, you have to understand first what they have in common.
- Both are not medical professionals and as such are not really taken seriously by all members of the medical community.
- Both, however, require extensive study in the fields of human anatomy and physiology and an intensive clinical affiliation or residency program to practice their professional skills.
- Both require certification by the proper accreditation organization.
- Both provide non-pharmacologic, non-medical, and non-surgical management of patient conditions.
- Both see patients who have pain and immobility.
The Main Differences
The main difference between a chiropractor and a physical therapist is the nature of their patient care management philosophy. Whereas Denver chiropractors focus on the correct alignment of the vertebral column, physical therapists, on the other hand, are more concerned about optimizing the mobility of the different parts of the body.
- Chiropractors focus on realignment of the different parts of the body to achieve a smooth flow of nervous impulses to the spinal cord and the brain. It is believed that by manipulating the different structures of the body, perfect alignment can be established at the level of the spinal cord where nerve impulses are sent to and received from the brain.
- Physical therapists focus on the optimal use of the different body organs for improved and more efficient movement. These are primarily useful in rehabilitation efforts to return body parts to their previous state of physical mobility.
- Both require extensive theoretical knowledge and practical skills, but chiropractors do not need a bachelor’s degree before entering chiropractic school while physical therapists must possess such a degree before entering PT school.
Whether you choose a chiropractor or a physical therapist for some of your muscle problems as well as pain, both can give you the best solution possible. However, if the main problem is in the region of your spine, then a chiropractor may be the best for you. If the issue involves more than the backbone and especially if you suffered a broken leg or any problem related to physical mobility, then perhaps the physiotherapist is the best choice.