Need a Chiropractor?

What is the difference between an osteopath, chiropractor and physio? Should I see them for different things?

All three are recognised under government regulation as separate allied health professions; all three are trained in university and all three treat musculoskeletal conditions or problems but work with different underlying treatment philosophies to solve those problems. Many techniques are common across all three.

The key aspect of osteopathic care is looking at the whole body, its structure and how the muscles, bones, ligaments, blood supply etc. function and work together. Treatment is very holistic rather than focusing on just the injury or problem area. Osteopaths train to assess, diagnose and treat patients to reduce pain and injuries with the aim to help the body function well. Depending on the problem osteopaths will use stretching, soft tissue techniques such as massage, gentle joint articulation and manipulation, and other techniques.

The Chiropractic Association of Australia defines chiropractic as focusing on the relationship between structure (primarily the spine, and pelvis) and function (as coordinated by the nervous system) and how that relationship affects the preservation and restoration of health.

The Australian Physiotherapy Association defines physiotherapy as a profession that assesses, diagnoses, treats through physical means. They look at movement and function and work with patients, assisting them to overcome movement disorders.