I want to try something a little different. I want to bring in some of the most interesting questions I get daily from patients and answer them for you, the same way I answer them for my patients. Writing them out may help me come up with new answers for patients who ask these questions again and hopefully it can help you get an idea of some of the things patients ask.

Hands down the most asked question I have gotten since starting with patients is: “What’s the difference between a chiropractor and a physiotherapist (or physical therapist)?”

This is a huge question. Made more confusing to patients by insurance companies that cover PT but not chiro care and to the patient it sometimes feels like they are getting similar treatment. My answer to this is pretty basic and goes something like this: chiropractors get more training and focus on spinal conditions and much more training on manipulation or adjustments of the joints of the spine and the rest of the body. While PT’s get more training on exercise based rehabilitation. That being said there are many chiros and PT’s that do a lot of post-graduate training in specific areas and have become strong in areas typically thought not pertinent to that profession. In other words we do a lot of the same things- especially in my experience working with a physiotherapist in the same office.

So what do I advise? Find a practitioner that you get good results with, that you feel comfortable with, that is not afraid to refer you to someone else if you are not getting the desired results, that is honest,  that is thorough and explains what they are doing. And if you find someone like that, stick with them!

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The scariest thing about starting practice.

We could probably argue that there are hundreds of things that are scary about starting in practice as this is really a subjective question. For me, the scariest thing about starting in practice was: feeling like I wasn’t qualified to tell people what to do.

Let’s go deeper. We get practical experience in the realm of student clinics and preceptorships, but for me, the feeling was that I didn’t have enough experience for people to take me seriously. Hopefully I’m not the only one! I still remember the first day, almost 2 years ago, I was so nervous about what I was going to say, and making sure that I sounded professional so people would listen to me. Know what happened? When people came into the office, they took me seriously almost automatically, because I was the one sitting behind the desk, with the certificate up on the wall. They eagerly soaked up all I had to say because they needed help, they wanted to get better.

My fear of feeling not qualified, was coming from my own insecurities. We get an amazing education and we know more than we think we know; but we don’t get much training on personal growth and development. Which for me turned out to be the hardest part about starting; convincing myself that I was ready, that I was now a professional a doctor of chiropractic, and that I could lead and guide people on their health journeys. The hardest part, in reality, was getting over the fear of myself.