Should You See A Physiotherapist or Chiropractor for Your Pain?

Stepping Stones in Life Therapy Service in Darwin, NT is a family therapy service that partakes in speech and language therapy, occupational therapy, psychology, counselling and physiotherapy. We would like to draw your attention to the important differences between physiotherapy and chiropractic treatment for pain to make sure that any pain you are experiencing can be resolved by the right person and the right treatment.

painful neck - physiotherapist or chiropractor

What is physiotherapy?

  • One of the primary goals of physiotherapy is to improve your ability to move without pain.
  • Physiotherapy focuses on the way that the body moves and how the body functions.
  • Physical therapists help to improve your mobility by performing exercises and stretches for specific parts of your body.
  • Physical therapists work in almost all healthcare environments and can even work in your home.

What is chiropractic care?

  • Primary goals of chiropractic care are to reduce pain and relieve problems with bones, muscles and joints.
  • Chiropractic care focuses primarily on back and neck pain, arm and leg joint pain and headaches.
  • Chiropractors assist in helping the body to heal itself through the use of manipulations and adjustments of the body.
  • Unlike physical therapists, chiropractors require specialised space and equipment when performing their treatment.

We hope the above has been able to illuminate the key differences between physiotherapy and chiropractic care. As we offer physiotherapy, we would like to go into more detail to inform you about what we can offer and when you should utilise these services.

Why use physiotherapy?

Physiotherapy may be a valuable treatment option if you have experienced an accident/injury/surgery/health condition that has restricted and limited your movement, you feel pain through movement, you wish to increase your mobility or you need to build strength to assist in the effects of a health condition that you may have, e.g., multiple sclerosis.

Physiotherapy treatments may include:

  • Heat and cold therapy
  • Electrical stimulation
  • Range of motion
  • Neurodevelopmental exercise
  • Therapeutic exercises
  • Gait training
  • Balance and coordination training

How do I choose between seeing a physiotherapist or a chiropractor?

If your pain revolves around a stiff or locked back or joints, you should consult a chiropractor rather than a physiotherapist. However, if your pain revolves around soft tissue areas or muscular problems that are limiting your movement as well as causing you pain, we recommend that you contact a physiotherapist.

Why choose us?

At Stepping Stones for Life Therapy Service, we offer a range of services for children, young adults and adults with orthopaedic, neurological, muscular or cardiothoracic issues. The benefits of our physiotherapy services in Darwin are:

  • They are designed for the individual.
  • This form of pain management is a better alternative than relying on pain medication.
  • Treatment may avoid the need for surgery.
  • Older patients are able to tackle general health issues.

Please contact us for a consultation or to enquire about how we can best assist your needs. You can contact us via our website, by phone on (08) 8985 6067 or by email.


Barbara Kapser

Barbara Kapser

Barbara Kapser is our psychologist at Stepping Stones in Life Therapy Service in Darwin. She's a member with the Australian Psychological Society and the Australian Association for Infant Mental Health.
She specialises in perinatal infant mental health, attachment disorders, developmental trauma and behaviour support.