What is osteopathy
Osteopathy is a system of diagnosis and treatment for a wide range of medical conditions. It works with the structure and function of the body and is based on the principle that the well-being of an individual depends on the skeleton, muscles, ligaments and connective tissues functioning smoothly.
For your body to work well, its structure must also work well. Osteopaths work to restore your body to a state of balance. Osteopaths use touch, physical manipulation, stretching and massage to increase the mobility of joints, to relieve muscle tension, to enhance the blood and nerve supply to tissues, and to help your body heal itself. They may also provide advice on posture and exercises to aid recovery, and prevent symptoms recurring.
Who and what do osteopaths treat?
Osteopaths’ patients include the young, older people, manual workers, office professionals, pregnant women, children and sportspeople. Patients seek treatment for a wide variety of conditions, including back pain, sciatia, changes to posture in pregnancy, postural problems caused by driving, work strain, gardening, or lifting, the pain of arthritis and minor sports injuries.
Listening and examining
A first appointment generally lasts about 40 minutes to allow the osteopath adequate time to:
- Listen and ask questions about your problem, your general health, other medical care you are receiving or medication you are taking, and record this in your case notes. The information you provide will be confidential.
- Examine you properly. It is likely the osteopath will ask you to remove some of your clothing. Tell your osteopath if you are uncomfortable about this. You can ask a friend or relative to accompany you throughout your treatment.
- Ask you to make simple movements and stretches to observe your posture and mobility. Because of the body’s structure, pain or stiffness you are experiencing in one part may be linked to a problem elsewhere.
- Examine the health of the joints, tissues and ligaments using their hands and a highly developed sense of touch called palpation.
Your osteopath will also check for signs of serious conditions they cannot treat and may advise you to see your GP or go to hospital. They can provide a referral letter for you.
Diagnosis and treatment
Osteopathy specialises in the diagnosis, management, treatment and prevention of musculoskeletal and other related disorders.
Your osteopath will give you a clear explanation of what they find. They will explain the benefits and any risks of the treatment they are recommending. It is important to understand and agree what the treatment can achieve, and the likely number of sessions needed for a noticeable improvement in how you feel.
Treatment is hands-on and involves skilled manipulation of the spine and joints, and massage of soft tissues. Your osteopath will explain what they are doing and will always ask your permission to treat you (known as consent).Please ask questions at any time if you have any concerns.
Exercises for self help can be provided.
To book an appointment, find out more information, or ask any questions you might have, you can always give us a call on 01603 660792 and speak to one of our friendly reception team. Otherwise, you can click to book online.