Chiropractic Care or Massage, Which is Best?
As summer begins in Chicago, Chicagoans and fellow Lincoln Parkers are checking out music festivals, concerts, and other lakefront activities, summer is 1 of the best times to be in Chicago. As outdoor sports are taking off with more pickleball, golf, beach volleyball, and softball, Lincoln Parkers and other Chicagoans staying active is usually a critical part of one’s summer. As one remains active with any outdoor sports and activities, it is important to stick to your routine via stretching, and strength training to avoid injury. If injury occurs due to repeated movements and overuse, one may consider a massage to try to help their injury, but also, may consider a chiropractor too. This post will address the differences between which treatment option may benefit you if and when an injury occurs.
Massage is helpful for a number of reasons, including reduced muscle tone, improved circulation within tight muscles and surrounding tissues, and a great stress reducer. Massage is often offered in 60 and 90 minute sessions, ranging from relaxation (Swedish), to deep tissue massage, and subsequent sports massage, just to name a few. When injury occurs, massage can serve as a great band-aid to get you out of pain immediately to increase flexibility, mobility, and function. If dealing with a chronic injury, massage can help to improve the elements of an acute injury, but it often will require several massages to treat the chronic injury. Massage, although effective, can also become expensive with good therapists in Lincoln Park, and in Chicago, charging $90 up to $150 per hour depending on the type and time.
Chiropractic care differs from massage in not only its approach, but its outcomes. Chiropractic care aims to discover how and why a fellow Chicagoan and Lincoln Parker is injured. Discovering the root cause of the problem will likely lead to quicker results from treatment because a thorough consultation and examination are performed initially (whereas massage does examine a patient). Moreover, corrective exercises should be provided to the patient from the chiropractor to help the individual attack the root cause of the problem and improve their function. In most chiropractic offices, a combination of manipulation, corrective exercises, and soft tissue work (not in the form of massage, but Active Release Techniques, PIR, PNF, etc…) to help the patient heal both in the short-term and long-term treatment plans. The patient has the decision as to what route he/she wants to go to help their injury (or injuries) heal swiftly. The cost of chiropractic care can be less as chiropractors accept most insurances in and massage is not covered by insurance unless performed by the MD, PT, or DC (which is often, the case due to insurance laws and regulations). Lastly, chiropractors have extensive training that massage therapists do not have. Massage therapists attend school for 1-2 years and chiropractors have 3.5-4 years of training (post college), so understanding what your injury is and how this developed, is easier for a chiropractor to diagnose due to his/her training.
It is a common question that one thinks about: is a massage therapist or chiropractor better for my injury? At the end of the day, one has to feel comfortable based on the information. Chiropractic care can and often aids patients in their recovery, despite massage’s utilization as a supplemental therapy injury tool. Determining the exact nature of the injury is something a chiropractor can do despite the help a massage can offer. These effective tools can aid patients to reduce an injury and minimize it in the future.
Brian Marion, DC, CCSP, ART, CKTP, SMFA Lincoln Park Chiropractic
2202 N. Lincoln Ave Ste 1 Chicago, IL 60614 (773) 248-2790