Can My Chiropractor Be My Primary Care Physician?

If you’ve been seeing a chiropractor, you may begin to wonder whether you can consider him or her your primary care physician. A chiropractor is not the same as a medical doctor, so the answer is “no.” Though both can receive doctoral degrees, a chiropractor does not receive a medical degree.

This doesn’t mean a chiropractor can’t offer you proper health care. On the contrary, there are many patients throughout the nation who have received the help they need from a chiropractor after not being able to find help from a medical doctor. The following is more information regarding chiropractors, their training and what they treat.

Chiropractic Training

When a chiropractor, like a chiropractor from AmeriWell Clinics, begins training, he or she will receive an undergraduate degree focused on science. A four-year chiropractic program will follow, offering hands-on experience and classroom learning. If a chiropractor specializes in a particular area, such as pediatrics or prenatal care, there will typically be an additional two- to three-year residency. After all training, chiropractors in the United States will receive a doctor of chiropractic degree. They will also need to obtain a license in the state in which they plan to practice chiropractic care.

Chiropractic Treatment

To compare a chiropractor and a medical doctor, you’ll realize they treat many of the same issues, but in very different ways. For example, a medical doctor may treat headaches with pain medication. A chiropractor may treat that same headache with an adjustment that rids the pain for good. Some other common issues chiropractors treat include:

  • Neck, back and pelvic pain
  • Hip and knee pain
  • Shoulder pain
  • Mental health issues
  • Herniated discs
  • Sciatica
  • Pregnancy symptoms
  • Sports injuries

Often times when a patient goes to the chiropractor for an adjustment, he or she will find relief for something entirely different. Though the initial issue will get taken care of, sometimes a certain pain or condition the patient didn’t realize was an issue is suddenly relieved, allowing the patient a better quality of life.

Something else to keep in mind is chiropractors do not treat with medication. In some rare instances, a chiropractor may suggest medication, but the patient would still have to go to a medical doctor to receive the prescription.

Contacting a Chiropractor Today

If you feel you need medical care, you’ll need to contact a doctor instead of a chiropractor, but in most cases, your chiropractor can handle the same issues your medical doctor can. To get started with an appointment, contact a chiropractor to get one scheduled today.