Physical Therapy vs. Massage Therapy — What’s The Difference?

When you’re first met with a pain problem or injury – you immediately try to figure out the best way to solve your issue so you can get back to feeling good again.

Whether the problem has gone on for a long time or you feel you’ve exhausted your options – it’s common for a lot of people to try a lot of ways to get rid of the pain…

➡️Maybe you’ve tried icing or applying heat to the painful area after reading an article or talking to a friend about the pain.

➡️Maybe you’ve been advised that pain medications will help for now and then the pain will disappear on its own, depending on the severity or the type of pain.

➡️Maybe you’ve tried putting exercising on pause in hopes that your pain will go away during the downtime.

While these options seem like they can provide the relief you’re looking for — sometimes the problem is a little deeper than that. You feel like you try solution after solution only to find that the pain comes back and you just can’t seem to figure out why.

After doing research and trying multiple solutions – massage and physical therapy are some of the only options left.

Both have similar goals for patients — to help restore some sort of regular function and/or mobility and relieve pain. But, what’s the difference between the two?

Better yet — which one is the better option when it comes to relieving your pain?

Do Physical Therapists Do Massage?
As mentioned before, while both therapy practices have similar end goals for the patient — it’s important to note the differences between the two. Knowing the difference between the two types of therapy will allow you to make a proper decision on what can help fix your pain problem.

Massage Therapy
The main goal of massage therapy is to target the painful area and work using massage techniques to release tension and increase flexibility. What this does for the patient is help you feel more relaxed, relieve stress, and even reduce pain.

That being said, massage therapy has its benefits. If you’re someone who is looking to release tension and relax — massage therapy is perfect for you.

But if you’re someone experiencing shoulder, knee, or back pain that just won’t go away no matter what you try – there might be a deeper issue that a physical therapist can help you fix.

Physical Therapy
Physical therapy works to provide rehabilitation and improve strength and mobility to those who have experienced pain or an injury due to physical activity or other factors.

It helps people with pain problems such as neck pain, shoulder pain, back pain, knee pain, foot/ankle pain, and similar issues. Some physical therapists help athletes with sports injuries, as well – all you have to do is find a physical therapist in your area that will treat the specific issue you’re having trouble with.

Physical therapy is usually necessary when there needs to be specialized care based on the patient and the pain problem they’re currently experiencing. Then, the physical therapist works with them to devise a treatment plan to get them back to feeling normal again with reduced pain. This provides long-term pain relief and real results that won’t leave you feeling frustrated that you can’t seem to find a way to fix the pain problem you continue to experience.

That’s why here at Align Therapy Clinic in Lehi and St George Utah we help our patients find the relief they’re looking for by using physical therapy techniques to help them win their life back.

No matter what kind of pain problem you’re experiencing – we’ll help you reach your goals and figure out a way to get you back to living life to the fullest.

Now You Know
Now you know the difference between massage and physical therapy. Hopefully, this gives you a little insight into what each therapy can help you with and why. Depending on what you’re experiencing and what issues you’d like to have resolved — there are solutions out there waiting for you.

Whether you’re looking to relieve some pain with massage therapy or looking to heal an injury that’s left you feeling frustrated — knowing the difference between each therapy can help narrow down your decision-making and trust that you’re making the best choice for you and your health.

Who We Help At Align Therapy

At Align Therapy, we understand that every single person’s problem is unique, which is why our first step is to get a deep understanding of what is happening to your body, and how it is effecting your life so we can create a plan that focuses on YOU and your goals.
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(801) 980-0860
David Butler PT DPT

David Butler

Align Therapy

"We help people with scoliosis and spine problems avoid surgery, reduce pain, and improve posture even if you have been told to wait and see if it gets worse."
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