Physiotherapist vs Chiropractor: Who Should You See?

physiotherapist vs chiropractor comparison Physiotherapy in London

Welcome to our comparison of physiotherapist vs chiropractor sessions! In this article, we are going to delve into the details of each discipline, exploring their similarities and differences. Whether you’re seeking relief from back pain, recovering from an injury, or aiming to improve your overall health, understanding the unique approaches of physiotherapists and chiropractors is essential. 

Read this guide, written by our knowledgeable physiotherapists in our London clinics, to understand which practitioner you should see for your problem. And don’t forget you can learn more about what physiotherapy is all about in our Ultimate Physio Guide.

Physiotherapy or Chiropractic Session?

Both physiotherapy and chiropractic care operate in the sphere of musculoskeletal healthcare, but understanding the differences between physiotherapist vs chiropractor care is essential for choosing a treatment option.

While both aim to relieve your pain and improve bodily function, they have totally different approaches: 

  • Physiotherapy emphasises a holistic and evidence-based approach, using a variety of techniques, including manual therapy, exercise, and education, to address a wide range of conditions and injuries. 
  • Chiropractic care focuses on spinal manipulation and joint adjustments to restore alignment and soothe your symptoms within a narrow scope of musculoskeletal issues. 

Chiropractic care can be effective for realigning your spine and providing relief from back pain, for example. But physiotherapy is all about long-term fixes. As well as taking a holistic approach, it focuses on rehabilitation so we don’t just fix your immediate pain but actually improve your quality of life.

Let’s take a closer look!

physiotherapist vs chiropractor in practice Physiotherapy in London

Physiotherapy

Physiotherapy is a manual treatment that assesses, diagnoses, and treats a wide range of physical conditions, aiming to improve your mobility, flexibility, and function. It’s an alternative medicine that’s backed by science, offered by both the NHS and private clinics. Whether you’re recovering from an injury, managing chronic pain, or seeking to optimise your overall wellbeing, physiotherapy is an ideal option. 

With a focus on rehabilitation and injury prevention, physiotherapy sessions are conducted by professional physiotherapists who employ various techniques, including manual therapy, exercise, and education. Suitable for individuals of all ages and abilities, physiotherapy is highly effective in relieving pain, restoring bodily function, and enhancing your quality of life.

What Physio is Best For

Physiotherapy can take different specialised approaches for a whole range of injuries and conditions, both acute and chronic. Whether you’re recovering from a sports injury, managing a chronic condition like arthritis, or seeking relief from persistent back pain, there’s a type of physiotherapy that can help. 

Here are just some of the specific conditions that we can treat with physiotherapy at our award-winning London clinics:

  • Sports injuries, including strains, sprains, and tendonitis.
  • Arthritis and joint pain management.
  • Back and neck pain, including sciatica and herniated discs.
  • Post-surgical rehabilitation, such as knee or hip replacement.
  • Musculoskeletal conditions, including fibromyalgia and carpal tunnel syndrome.
  • Neurological conditions, such as stroke rehabilitation and multiple sclerosis.

Physiotherapy is all about helping you overcome limitations, regain full function, and live your best life pain-free.

Finding a Physiotherapist

In the UK, finding a qualified physiotherapist involves ensuring they are registered with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) to practise legally. Look for professionals with a minimum of a bachelor’s degree in physiotherapy, though many hold advanced degrees or specialised certifications. Consider their areas of expertise and experience, as well as any additional training or specialisations that might be relevant to you. 

Ultimately, you have the freedom to choose a physiotherapist based on their qualifications and experience. Start your search by exploring our team of expert physiotherapists at One Body LDN, where we prioritise quality care and personalised treatments. Did you know that you can use private health insurance to pay for physiotherapy, whether or not you’ve been referred by the NHS?

Physiotherapy London Service Physiotherapy in London

Chiropractic

Chiropractic is a healthcare discipline that focuses on the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of musculoskeletal disorders, primarily through manual adjustment and manipulation of the spine and other joints. So, it’s quite similar to physiotherapy!

Rooted in the belief that proper alignment of the musculoskeletal system is key to your body’s natural ability to heal itself, chiropractic care aims to restore function, alleviate pain, and improve your overall wellbeing. 

Chiropractors use hands-on techniques to address joint restrictions or misalignments, known as subluxations, which may be interfering with nerve function and disrupting your body’s balance. Like physiotherapy, chiropractic care has a holistic and patient-centred approach that’s a non-invasive way to address any health concerns.

What Chiropractic Care is Best For

Chiropractic care focuses on the diagnosis and treatment of musculoskeletal conditions, just like physiotherapy. However, where chiropractic care differs is the range of conditions treated. Chiropractors primarily look at issues related to spinal alignment and joint function, aiming to restore proper movement and treat symptoms (usually pain and stiffness). 

Common conditions treated by chiropractors include:

  • Back pain, including lower back pain and sciatica
  • Neck pain and stiffness
  • Headaches and migraines
  • Joint pain in the shoulders, hips, and knees
  • Muscle tension and stiffness in the back and shoulders

Chiropractic care aims to optimise spinal health and enhance your overall physical function. Just like physiotherapy, pain relief and freedom of movement are the priorities. But while physiotherapy encompasses the entire body, also incorporating exercises and education for long-term recovery, chiropractic care focuses just on the spine for immediate relief.

Finding a Chiropractor

Similarly to physiotherapy, if you want to get chiropractic care in the UK you should look for qualified and registered practitioners.

When seeking a chiropractor in the UK, it’s essential to ensure they are registered with the General Chiropractic Council (GCC). Without this registration, a chiropractor cannot legitimately practise. Like finding a physiotherapist, consider their qualifications, experience, and any specialised training that might be relevant. 

While chiropractic care may be an option for some people, it’s worth noting the differences between physiotherapist vs chiropractor approaches. Physiotherapy offers a broader scope of treatments and has a solid evidence-based approach to offering comprehensive care. At One Body LDN, our team of expert physiotherapists provides personalised and effective treatment options, whether you need physiotherapy, osteopathy, a sports massage, or even strength training.

To find out whether you need a physiotherapist vs chiropractor, start with an initial physiotherapy assessment. Get started at One Body today and come see us in London – find our state-of-the-art clinics near London Bridge, Old Street, and Farringdon today.

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