How Physiotherapists Differ From Chiropractors

September 25th, 2023
How Physiotherapists Differ From Chiropractors

When dealing with persistent pain or healing from an injury, the expertise of a specialist is priceless. The two types of experts called upon in such situations are physiotherapists and chiropractors. Although they may appear to offer similar services, their approaches and educational training differ significantly.

Determining the best option between physiotherapy and chiropractic care isn't straightforward, as the most ideal treatment largely depends on your injury's severity, location, and even your body type. Therefore, integrating both treatments, while understanding their differences, could be key to your path toward recovery.

Education Differences

In Canada, physiotherapists and chiropractors follow different educational paths. For physiotherapists, they need a master’s degree in Physiotherapy, usually after a Bachelor's, and must pass an exam and register provincially. Chiropractors, on the other hand, must take a four-year Doctor of Chiropractic (DC) degree program and need to clear national and provincial board exams.

Treatment Methods

The treatment methods of a chiropractor and physiotherapist are also different. Physiotherapists use exercises, stretching, and hands-on therapy to help with muscle and joint problems. They also spend a lot of time educating patients on proper posture and movement. 

Chiropractors primarily concentrate on spinal adjustments to ensure correct body alignment. They utilize hands-on manipulation to alleviate pain, improve functionality, and encourage the body's natural ability to heal itself.

Which Treatment Route is Best For My Condition?

If you're a sports enthusiast or dealing with conditions like arthritis or chronic issues, a physiotherapist is often the better option. But for spinal health issues like back pain or sciatica, you will often be better suited to visit a chiropractor.

Physiotherapy is better suited to treat a wide range of conditions and is therefore often the best treatment option to start with. With that said, it often needs a bit of support from other treatment modalities. At Steveston Physiotherapy we use Physiotherapy, IMS, and spinal decompression to help you manage any injury.

Steveston Physiotherapy is a family-owned clinic focused on providing custom exercises and activities to ensure optimal recovery. We work closely with a small list of patients to prevent injuries, manage acute conditions, and minimize chronic pain.