Whether we call them alternative or complementary medicine, several qualifiers designate these non-traditional practices which bring together many fields of expertise: chiropractic, acupuncture, physiotherapy, osteopathy, homeopathy, naturopathy, occupational therapy… and so on.
If you’ve ever appealed for help on Facebook – during a severe migraine, for example – you’ve probably received as many referrals as you have from friends, one praising their favorite acupuncturist, the other his chiropractor or his darling physio. Enough to lose your mind for good! This contradictory advice is not, however, all that surprising, given the overlaps – even complementarities – that exist between these various disciplines.
A chiropractor not just for the back
By means of adjustments made with the hands, chiropractic helps treat and even prevent neuro-musculoskeletal conditions, that is, conditions involving the nerves, muscles and bones. We all know someone who, struggling with a stiff neck went to the chiropractor to have their neck “cracked” – an expression chiropractors don’t like, by the way. The goal of treatment is actually to restore normal circulation of nerve impulses.
Did you know that our head represents 10% of our weight? Texting neck syndrome occurs when texting for too long with the head tilted over 45 degrees, one develops a static, hunched posture that leads to a host of musculoskeletal problems. We can thus lose the mobility of the neck, which causes headaches, fatigue, and loss of concentration, numbness in the hands, pain in the wrists and even osteoarthritis for long term. Before it cracks, it is better to go to a chiropractor!
Physio, the body’s best friend
Like acupuncture, chiropractic and occupational therapy, physiotherapy is regulated by a professional order. Like the chiropractor, the physiotherapist uses manipulations to treat functional limitations on the neuro-musculoskeletal level, following an accident or due to a chronic condition. The treatments are accompanied by an exercise program to continue the rehabilitation at home.
Acupuncture, an energy stimulator
Unlike other disciplines focused on manipulation, acupuncture acts on the nervous and energy system through needles inserted at neuralgic points of the body. The acupuncturist can also use other techniques: heat, by burning an herb called moxa (mugwort); pressure, using suction cups that you can learn to use yourself in the shower; electrostimulation combined with needles to increase the analgesic effect, and even the soft laser.
According to Kosak Chiropractic & Acupuncture the body generally has everything it needs to heal, but if it has abandoned the game, then it must be reminded to do its job.
A good massage, please!
Massage therapy, a modern version of the ancient science of touch, is divided into relaxation and therapeutic treatments. By helping to relieve muscle pain and reduce the effects of stress, massage has an influence on our quality of life. This therapeutic contribution is also sought in hospital oncology departments, where massage therapy would reduce cancer symptoms and better metabolize drugs. In addition, sports massages are known to maximize performance, accelerate recovery and prevent injuries.
Osteopathy, the gentle approach
Osteopathy is presented as a global discipline that affects all areas of the body: musculoskeletal, visceral and cranial. By identifying blockages and sources of tension, the osteopath seeks to restore the balance between these different systems. The muscles pull on the structures and osteopathy uses the tensioning of the muscles to bring back alignment and correct impacts.