Chiropractors are trained to diagnose, assess, treat and manage cases of musculoskeletal misalignment. There are two main branches of chiropractic with McTimoney chiropractic offering a more holistic approach with less technical intervention.
Chiropractic is a regulated primary healthcare profession which was started in the USA by Daniel David Palmer in 1895 and has become increasingly popular in the 21st century. It was introduced to the UK in about 1908. The word ‘chiropractic’ 'is derived from the Greek words ‘cheir’ and ‘praxis’ and describes a method of hands-on treatment which was originally rooted in vitalism, naturalism, magnetism and spirituality and which has now aligned itself more with the philosophy of mechanistic conventional medicine. At a meeting of the Privy Council on Wednesday 12th November 2012, the Queen approved the grant of a Royal Charter to the College of Chiropractors, the first Royal Charter to be granted to a complementary medicine organisation in the UK. In February 2013, the Queen gave permission for the College to change its name to The Royal College of Chiropractors.
Chiropractors are trained to diagnose, assess, treat and manage cases of musculoskeletal misalignment. They use X rays, MRI, DXA scans and shockwave therapy as well as ice, heat, exercise, ultrasound and acupuncture alongside the manipulations they perform. They also give life-style advice and use other self-help, drug-free modalities.
About 25% of chiropractors follow a more holistic style of practice known as McTimoney chiropractic which is considered to be gentler.
All chiropractors believe that a healthy spine facilitates a healthy life and the treatment uses a range of techniques to reduce pain, improve function and increase mobility of the skeleton and its appendages. It is used extensively for back pain and head pain and sports injuries particularly, with great success.
In Britain chiropractors are subject to statutory regulation.
The UK regulator is the General Chiropractic Council.