Should I See A Chiropractor or Aquatic Therapist?
What is Chiropractic Care?
Chiropractic care is an extremely popular treatment for pain relief. A skilled, licensed chiropractor is able to perform hands on spinal alignments which can result in healing of pain and restoration of movement without surgery or medication. Research suggests that chiropractic care may be helpful in treating neck pain, back injuries, osteoarthritis, and fibromyalgia and the benefits include joint pain relief, improved posture, improved physical function and performance, as well as relief from stress and tension disorders.
What is Aquatic Therapy?
Aquatic therapy is taking advantage of the properties of water to reduce pain, restore range of motion, and build muscle strength. The natural buoyancy of water allows a therapist to restore movement to an injured or surgically repaired joint while keeping it fully supported in ways that land based systems are unable to provide. The hydrostatic pressure, or force the water exerts on the body, helps decrease pain and swelling (edema).
Which Should I See?
Studies have shown that chiropractic care as well as aquatic therapy are beneficial to injuries as well as illnesses such as osteoarthritis and fibromyalgia. Patients with osteoporosis or spinal cord compression should not undergo chiropractic treatment but are able to undergo aquatic therapy with a certified specialist together in the water. The natural properties of water will be able to support and balance the body and an appropriate water temperature can even increase the delivery of nutrients to the body. Performing exercises in a body of water can stimulate bone and muscle growth without the stress of using weights on land.
Both methods of treatment can be enormously beneficial for pain relief and healing. It is helpful to discuss with your primary care physician as well as check and see if your insurance policy covers these treatments and the conditions for coverage. Although it is not required by law, it is recommended to work with an aquatic therapist that goes into the pool with you, since the feedback received and stimulation of motion and correct muscle usage is dramatically greater than being in the pool by yourself. Both treatments have their unique advantages and taking advantage of them is a great way to ensure health, vitality, and greater quality of life.
Photo courtesy of Viewmedica