Alternative healthcare modalities are becoming increasingly popular as more individuals seek natural and holistic approaches to healthcare. Among these modalities, Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) stands out as a comprehensive system of healthcare that emphasizes the interconnectedness of the mind, body, and spirit. Acupuncture, a practice within TCM, is widely used by many today.
As the demand for natural and holistic approaches to healthcare continues to grow, many individuals are considering a career as an acupuncturist. However, before making the decision to pursue this career path, it is important to consider how it compares to other alternative healthcare modalities such as Registered Massage Therapists (RMTs), Chiropractors, Naturopathic Doctors, and Reflexologists. By examining the career stats of these professions and comparing them to that of an acupuncturist, individuals can make an informed decision about their career path.
In this blog post, we will compare the career of an acupuncturist to those of other alternative healthcare modalities, highlighting the advantages and disadvantages of each profession. We will explore the physical demands of each profession, the projected growth rate of each industry, and the overall job outlook. By the end of this blog post, readers will have a better understanding of the career stats of various alternative healthcare modalities and why acupuncture and TCM may be a better fit for some individuals.
Acupuncturists are trained professionals who use thin needles to stimulate specific points on the body to promote healing and balance. This form of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) has been used for thousands of years to treat a variety of ailments. In recent years, acupuncture has gained popularity in Western countries as more people seek natural and holistic approaches to healthcare. This career is known to have a healthy work-life balance, thus, makes it a highly desirable career for many.
When comparing the career of an acupuncturist to that of an RMT, we find that while RMTs are highly trained professionals who provide an essential healthcare service, their careers can be physically demanding. RMTs often experience burnout due to the physical strain of their work by spending most of their day using their hands and arms to apply pressure to their client’s muscles. This can be physically demanding, resulting in a shorter career lifespan. In contrast, acupuncturists are less taxed by physical labour, allowing them to enjoy longer careers without the same risk of burnout. A statistic also released from 2019 to 2020 it was proved that the number of registered massage therapists that were deemed inactive increased by 22%. The Canadian College of Massage in Halifax even told CBC News that early in 2020 during the pandemic that they were getting many calls from clinics across the country looking for new grads because they had too many clients and not enough workers.
Chiropractors are healthcare professionals who focus on the musculoskeletal system and use manual techniques to help alleviate pain and improve mobility. With more than 9,000 licenced chiropractors practising in Canada, it is safe to say the numbers continue to rise for the foreseeable future. According to the labour market under the Government of Canada, it seems both chiropractors and acupuncturists have a projected growth rate within the next three years falling between a median of “good” and “very good” throughout various provinces. It was found that 30% of chiropractors see between 50 and 100 patients in a week, while 24% would see up to 150 patients. This shows the flexibility of how you want your career to sprout and how much you want to balance your personal life as well with only 17% spending less than 20 hours per week in practice!
Reflexologists apply pressure to specific points on the hands and feet to promote healing and balance in the body. While reflexology is a complementary therapy and not a primary healthcare service, it is a popular modality within the alternative healthcare industry. According to the Job Bank under the Government of Canada, Reflexologists and acupuncturists have a median of “good” to “very good” standing across Canada over the next three years. This means employment growth will lead to several new positions over the next while.
While there are many modalities within the alternative healthcare industry, acupuncture and TCM may be a better fit for some individuals due to the favourable career statistics and holistic approach to healthcare. However, it is important to explore the various modalities and find the one that resonates with you the most. Whether you choose to pursue a career as an acupuncturist, RMT, chiropractor, naturopathic doctor, or reflexologist, you will be joining a growing field that values natural and holistic approaches to healthcare.