When experiencing pain or discomfort it is important to see a Practitioner who will be most beneficial in helping to relieve your symptoms and hopefully prevent the recurrence of these problems. There are a wide variety of professions available, who are all trained to deal with specific problems and specialise in certain areas of health and the human body itself. Here are a range of professions who are able to help, with a sample of what they are most useful in treating, in order to help you find the most effective treatment, whatever your problem may be.
A Chiropractor’s role is to treat mechanical problems relating to the musculoskeletal system and prevent further problems which can in turn affect the nervous system and a patients general health. During a chiropractic session, the treatment will consist of manual therapies, with the main emphasis often being spinal manipulation and gentle adjustments to correct any misalignments. Chiropractors are specialised in treating conditions that relate directly to the spine. However, treating these initial problems can often have a domino effect on other health conditions and have been known to help ease problems such as migraines and irritable bowel syndrome.
Osteopaths treat and prevent problems relating to bones and joints and most commonly treat postural problems, for example, changes due to pregnancy, working position and arthritis. An osteopath will aim to improve the overall structure of a persons body, helping the body to return to a state of balance. A variety of techniques are used during their treatment sessions, for example: manipulations and stretching, in order to increase joint mobility.
Physiotherapists are trained with a broad knowledge of physical problems within different systems of the body. As well as musculoskeletal issues, physios are trained to treat conditions relating to the cardiovascular, neurological and respiratory systems, providing treatment for conditions caused by injury, disease, illness and ageing. Physiotherapists will use a variety of treatment techniques, including: manual therapies (mobilisations and manipulations), electrotherapy techniques and exercises. The treatment provided will be dependant upon the condition a patient presents with and will aim to restore as much normal function as possible.
Sport Rehabilitators are specifically trained to work with those suffering from musculoskeletal problems (bones, joints, ligaments, tendons, muscles and nerves). Rehabbers will often deal with injuries/conditions from the initial onset through until the return of full function and ability. Injuries are not limited to sport based injuries, as rehabbers will often also work with patients suffering from various occupational injuries and pain. A variety of treatment techniques are often used during sport rehabilitation sessions, such as: massage, electrotherapy, exercises, biomechanical correction and taping. The treatments used will be based on the problem itself and then tailored towards a patients occupation
A Massage Therapist manipulates the soft tissues of the body in order to minimise any tension and stress, and to relieve the patient of any pain they may be experiencing. Clients visiting Massage Therapists will often present with symptoms of general tightness and stiffness, which can therefore cause pain or decreased movement. Therapists may use a variety of techniques during a treatment session, such as: soft/deep tissue massage, trigger pointing, frictions and mobilisations. The techniques used will often be dependant upon the client’s symptoms as well as pain threshold.
The majority of these professions will have an initial assessment, where they will perform both general assessments (current problem, symptoms and medical history) and physical examinations (assessment of body part, movement and strength). These sessions tend to be a maximum of 60 minutes long, include an in depth discussion, perform all the necessary assessments, as well as hands-on treatment. Prices normally range from £25 to £60. Follow up sessions can often range for 30 minutes up to an hour, depending on which forms of treatment are deemed appropriate by the Practitioner providing the treatment. The majority of problems will require more than one treatment, in order to help the body regain function, mobility and to eliminate pain and stiffness.