What is Osteopathy?
Osteopathy is an approach to health care that strives to provide the body with optimum conditions for health by working with your body’s own healing mechanisms to achieve results.
Osteopathy was founded in the 1800s by an American Doctor, A T Still. Dr Still recognised the relationship between the structure and function of the body by his observation of how the body changed when in disease states. He then attempted to adjust the structure in order to improve the function. He also believed that movement was a key to life. As a result osteopaths focus on the muscles, soft tissues and bony structures underneath to achieve maximum possible movement of health giving fluids such as blood and lymph.
Osteopathy is an effective and reliable form of treatment for a wide variety of conditions from back pain and the normal aches and pains as we age, to headaches and digestive problems.
The UK National Institute for Health and Care Excellence recommends spinal manipulation for lower back pain.
Osteopaths consider each person as an individual. Using their hands, they identify tension patterns created within the human body. Using gentle stretching and mobilising techniques, they work with the body to reduce those tensions to facilitate the healing process.
Osteopathy can help provide relief for the body's structural, mechanical and functional problems in people of all ages. Most osteopathic treatment is gentle and rhythmical, making it ideally suited for babies from newborns to toddlers as well as older children and adults.
Because osteopaths treat people, giving a list of conditions we treat is sometimes misleading. We are able to help you accommodate the changes in many ways, when your function is affected by your structure.
What happens when you consult an Osteopath?
At the beginning of your session, your osteopath will take time to listen to you and ask questions about your symptoms, and general health, lifestyle and activities. This will then help them make an accurate diagnosis and suggest appropriate treatments that you can consider.
You will be asked to undress down to your underwear so that the osteopath is able to examine the areas of your body causing discomfort. This may include some tests such as reflexes and blood pressure. Sometimes the cause of the pain is in a different place to the pain, so they may examine your whole body. Your osteopath will feel for changes in your muscles and joints and examine these areas to identify problems. They may also assess your posture and the way you move.
Most osteopaths will begin treatment at your first appointment, but sometimes they may suggest that you seek further tests such as blood tests or scans first. Occasionally they may refer you back to your GP if osteopathy is not suitable for you.
If you are unsure whether Osteopathy could help you, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with Poppie and speak with an Osteopath who will be happy to advise you.
The General Osteopathic Council (GOsC) regulates the practice of Osteopathy in the UK promoting safety and monitoring standards of conduct. By law an Osteopath must be registered and comply with strict regulatory requirements.