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What is the difference between a chiropracter and an osteopath?

Updated: Apr 4, 2023

Chiropractors and osteopaths are both healthcare professionals who focus on the musculoskeletal system and how it affects the overall health of the body. However, there are some differences between the two professions.

Osteopathic Treatment

Chiropractors primarily focus on the spine and its alignment. They believe that misalignments of the spine can cause problems throughout the body, including pain, decreased mobility, and other health issues.

Chiropractors typically use manual manipulation techniques to align and mobilize the spine and other joints in the body. The most common method is called a "chiropractic adjustment," in which the chiropractor uses his or her hands to apply gentle pressure to the spine to move the vertebrae into the proper position. Other techniques that chiropractors may use include traction, extension and massage.

Osteopaths, on the other hand, take a more holistic approach to healthcare. They view the body as a whole and believe that all its systems are interconnected. Osteopaths treat not only musculoskeletal problems but also other health issues such as respiratory or digestive problems.

Osteopaths also use manual manipulation techniques, but they tend to be more versatile and can treat different types of tissues in the body. These include bones, muscles, ligaments, tendons and organs. Osteopaths may use a variety of techniques to mobilize tissues, including the methods mentioned above such as traction, stretching, and massage. Osteopaths may also use other techniques such as fascia techniques, internal organ manipulation, or acupuncture.

While there are differences between the two professions, there is also a lot of overlap in terms of the techniques they use and the conditions they treat. Ultimately, the choice between a chiropractor and an osteopath will depend on your individual needs and preferences, as well as the availability of practitioners in your area.

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