Should I See A Chiropractor or a Physiotherapist?

Should I See A Chiropractor Or A Physiotherapist?

Both chiropractors and physiotherapists are highly skilled at what they do, but a casual glance at these professions can lead some people to think they’re the same thing. In some ways, they are: both chiropractors and physiotherapists believe in natural, non-invasive therapies. However, one of these professionals may be more suitable than the other – and that’s what we’re taking a look at. Chiro vs physio – which one do you need?

What Do Physical Therapy and Chiropractic Care Have In Common?

As we said, both professions share a number of similarities. These include:

  • Manual hands-on therapy to treat your condition
  • Non-invasive, non-surgical and drug-free techniques for managing pain and discomfort
  • A focus on wellness plans outside of physiotherapy/chiropractor appointments
  • Both are registered health professionals with many years of training.

Physiotherapists and chiropractors are both healthcare professionals who work to help patients with musculoskeletal problems. Both physiotherapists and chiropractors take a holistic approach to patient care, considering the entire person – including their lifestyle, habits, and environment – when developing a treatment plan.

And How Do They Differ?

When it comes to the question of chiro vs physio, looking at the different treatments that are offered can help you see the difference and figure out which professional you need to see.


Physiotherapy focuses on pain-free movement often experienced after an injury, and it’s one of the key primary goals of the profession. A physiotherapist will also focus on how the body moves and functions as a whole. Physical therapists also help you to perform stretches and exercises in order to help improve your mobility. They also work in a wide range of healthcare environments such as emergency departments and ICU, and some can even provide in-home care.

Chiropractic Care

Chiropractic care generally involves pain relief and alignment of the spine, as a misaligned spine can contribute to a range of problems including poor posture, decreased mobility, back/neck and thoracic pain and a reduced range of motion. Chiropractors perform adjustments to help your body heal itself, rather than using medication or surgery.

Chiropractors usually work in specialised chiropractic clinics with chiropractic specific tables in order to perform their adjustments and give you the best care possible.

What Is Involved In Physical Therapy?

There are quite a few reasons why physiotherapy can be a great healthcare solution, and depending on your symptoms, different exercises and techniques will be used. If you suffer from chronic pain, an injury, are recovering from surgery, or experience neurological or respiratory conditions, physical therapy can assist.

A physiotherapist focuses on improving your ability to move and function without pain. This can go a long way toward improving the quality of your life, including keeping you functional throughout your daily life.

Physical therapy treatment usually involves:

  • Pain, flexibility and movement evaluation
  • A list of exercises, stretches, and manipulation to help you recover strength
  • Instructions on how to move to avoid injury or pain
  • An ongoing wellness plan to complement your sessions
  • Heat or cold therapy to reduce pain.

What Is Involved In Chiropractic Care?

Chiropractors use manual therapy techniques to alleviate pain and inflammation by adjusting various parts of the body. When it comes to chiro vs physio, one of the biggest differences is the use of spinal and extremity joint adjustments that assist to bring the body back into alignment and balance. Chiropractors have a strong focus on correctly alignment and creating a stable foundation to the body while physiotherapists tend to have more of a focus on the soft tissue- muscles/ligamets and tendons and will use a variety of soft tissue techniques and strengthening to assist their patients.

Chiropractic care can help a broad range of health conditions including poor posture and mobility issues, and is suitable for individuals of all ages. Chiropractic treatments can also involve:

  • Evaluation of symptoms based on a physical exam and tests
  • Adjustments including spinal manipulation to assist with pain and alignment
  • Discussion and use of other forms of treatment, such as dry needling
  • Recommending lifestyle adjustments to reduce pain.

How Can Physiotherapy Help Me?

If you experience any of the following, physiotherapy can be a great path of treatment for you.

  • Acute soft tissue injuries such as a rolled ankle or swollen knee after playing sports
  • Reduced mobility, including difficulty walking or moving due to physical impairment or disability
  • You are looking to prevent injuries via improving your strength and flexibilty
  • You require recovering from an injury or after surgery, such as those who have suffered from an ACL tear.

How Can A Chiropractor Help Me?

An experienced chiropractor can help you with a number of conditions including:

  • Back pain
  • Headaches
  • Sports injuries
  • Joint pain
  • Poor posture.

Chiro vs Physio: Now You Know

Now that you know the key differences between a chiropractor and a physiotherapist, you can make a more informed choice about your treatment options. If you’re looking for an experienced chiropractor located in the heart of Brisbane, don’t hesitate to reach out to Dynamic Chiropractic’s team and make a booking today.

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