Are Chiropractors Real Doctors? | Here's What You Should Know

Chiropractors use chiropractic techniques to treat disorders of the bones, nerves, muscles, and ligaments. They graduate as doctors of chiropractic degrees but are not medical doctors. Chiropractors have more hours of schooling in some areas of the body than traditional medical doctors do. After passing the educational and training requirements, a potential chiropractor in the United States must sit for their state licensing board. They will then be known as a doctor of chiropractic once they have passed the board’s exams and earned their credentials. They’re trained to treat various conditions and injuries that affect the musculoskeletal system – including your back! 


Have you ever wondered what the differences are between a medical professional and a chiropractor?

When it comes to the differences between medical professionals and chiropractors, many factors can be considered. For example, when someone is trying to determine how long they will spend studying for each profession, they may find that the amount of time spent on education is not always indicative of their career path. However, this does not mean that there aren’t other ways to differentiate between these two professions. Some people may say that the timing itself isn’t necessarily the defining factor in determining whether or not someone should become a medical professional or a chiropractor.

Here is a brief look at what an aspiring chiropractor will need to take before practicing. Though each school of medicine will offer its medical program, the comparisons between these schools are relatively the same.

  • Biochemistry/Chemistry Courses (Medical Doctor – 100 hrs, Chiropractor 161 hours)
  • Diagnosis (Medical Doctor – 171 hrs, Chiropractor 149 hours)
  • Neurology (Medical Doctor – 100 hrs, Chiropractor 161 hours)
  • psychology/psychiatry (Medical Doctor – 323 hrs, Chiropractor 56 hours)
  • Xray (Medical Doctor – 13 hrs, Chiropractor 271 hours)
  • Orthopedics/ Manual Therapy (Medical Doctor – 2 hrs, Chiropractor 168 hours)
  • anatomy + Physiology (Medical Doctor – 215 hrs, Chiropractor 699 hours)
  • Pathology (Medical Doctor – 507 hrs, Chiropractor 296 hours)

The course hours required to become a chiropractor are significantly more than that of becoming a medical physician. It may be surprising that the medical physician only needs 1444 hours while the chiropractor has to earn at least 2208 credit hours! So, why does it take so much more time and effort for someone who wants to become a chiropractor? Well, there are many reasons, but one primary reason is that they have an extensive amount of courses in specific areas such as radiology, neurology, orthopedics, and physical therapy.

Glorified Therapists — Statement is Not True

You may have heard that chiropractors are glorified physical therapists, but this is far from the truth. While they share some similarities in their training and practice, there are significant differences between the two professions. Both require extensive education and experience to become licensed professionals.

Massage therapists are trained to relieve stress due to muscle tension, but chiropractors are called in to diagnose misaligned spines, pinched nerves, and muscle strains. So if you’re looking for a professional who can help with your chronic back pain, it might be time to call a chiropractor, especially since they are called in to provide a diagnosis of vehicle accidents, misaligned spines, pinched nerves, and muscle strains.

Science supporting chiropractic treatment

A 2018 analysis of 17 years of spinal manipulation and mobilization research found that it was a more passive sort of manipulation. The researchers studied the impact of these therapies on persistent lower back pain and discovered that chiropractic techniques were “worthwhile” options for managing pain.

A 2017 study looked at the effectiveness of spinal manipulation in treating lower back discomfort. The researchers found that treatment improved both function and pain for up to 6 weeks.

The American College of Physicians advises patients with lower back pain to use a variety of non-pharmacological treatments, including spinal manipulation. Although there are no set standards for the number of chiropractic therapy sessions or their duration, most researchers believe more research is required to establish an optimum length and frequency of chiropractic treatments.

Technically, Chiropractors are not medical doctors, but they do have extensive training in the musculoskeletal system. They provide treatment for a wide range of conditions that affect your bones, muscles, and joints. This includes back pain, neck pain, headaches, and sports injuries. Their treatments help restore mobility and relieve discomfort caused by everyday activities or accidents. You’ll feel better after just one visit!

You can finally get rid of your back problems and live a healthy life. The best way to do this is by visiting the right professional that specializes in this area. While there is nothing wrong with going to an MD, chiropractors specialize in curing back pain. So save yourself time and go directly to them! It’s much quicker than visiting an MD first.