This has got to be one of the most frequently asked and hardest to answer questions and my considered opinion is this … As a Chiropractor, I could go back into history and philosophy, but actually all you the patient (or prospective patient) wants to know is how you will be treated if you go to one rather than the other. Chiropractors focus primarily on detecting misalignment of the spine, hips and other joints in the body and the surrounding soft tissues; Osteopaths tend to consider the rest of the body as well. This specific versus global approach is carried through to the adjustments or corrections also; Chiropractors tend to perform very specific adjustments to restore joint function and position in areas where they detect abnormalities in movement or function, whereas Osteopaths use more global adjustments.
Some Chiropractors treat more like Osteopaths and vice versa. Both will have cases of extraordinary success and cases where their treatment has been less effective. My personal opinion? I was drawn to the specificity of Chiropractic and that’s why I trained as one. At the end of the day, find a practitioner that you have been recommended to and check they are registered with the GCC (General Chiropractic Council) or the BOC (British Osteopathic Council).