How Osteopathy Works

Osteopathic treatment is gentle, safe and non-invasive.  Osteopathy works on the muscles, joints and nervous system, treating the body as a whole unit and considers all aspects of the patient's life.

I must therefore treat the whole patient, considering such factors as nutrition and mental habits in addition to physical symptoms.  Osteopathy is a primary healthcare system, complementary to other medical practices.

I may advise on posture, lifestyle and stress.  Osteopathy and medicine have a great deal in common, using scientific knowledge of anatomy and physiology.  They both use clinical methods of investigation.  As a qualified osteopath I know enough about pathology to recognise conditions that should be referred to a medically qualified practitioner.

Osteopathy offers an array of techniques that alleviate pain in the joints, nerves and muscle tissues; restore freedom of movement and enhance the body’s own healing power.
It is recognised as a successful treatment by the British Medical Association and gained Primary Healthcare Status in 1993, which allows people to use osteopaths as a first port of call, as they would a GP or dentist.

 

 

Consultation

At the initial consultation a thorough case history is taken, followed by a detailed examination of your posture, muscles, ligaments, and joints. All of your movements will be observed in detail, and this information will be used to provide a diagnosis.  Once a diagnosis is reached, we will then use a wide range of manual techniques, for example soft tissue massage and manipulations, to help improve function and provide pain relief.  If necessary you will be referred to a specialist via your GP for a second opinion.

All patients are different therefore some patients may require one treatment, and others may require a course of treatment.  This would involve returning periodically for short, medium and long term management of a condition.  We never want you to feel as though you are rushed out of the door, so expect treatments to last for about 45 minutes after your first visit.

 

 

1. Soft-tissue Techniques

Soft Tissue Techniques This treats tight painful muscle tissues which restrict normal flexibility and co-ordination. Treatment directly stretches the muscles fibres as well as breaking adhesions within the tissues. Direct pressure and stretching of the muscle stimulate small nerve endings within the tendons which through a reflex action lead to relaxation of the muscle fibres. It is also possible to remove particular localised trigger-points within muscle – these are areas of tender tissue which adversely affect the local nerve structures and which ‘refer’ pain to other areas of the body. Additionally, following tears and strains, direct soft tissue work can break down scar tissue and restore the proper alignment the muscle fibres.

2. Articulation

Articulation Rhythmical motion carried out on a joint to improve its quality and range of movement. The motion gently stretches the tissues surrounding the joint, as well as creating a pumping action to improve the blood supply to the area and aid reduction of inflammatory products.

3. Manipulation

Manipulation A precise skilled technique performed to a joint to improve its mobility. This can free adhesions within the joint, restoring a lost range of motion. The technique affects the sensory nerve endings within the lining of the joint resetting local neurological reflexes, bringing local muscular relaxation and increased blood flow to the area.

4. Further Treatment

While osteopathic treatment will work well in the great majority of cases, in some cases it may be necessary to supplement it with further treatment, such as medication, referral for scans or blood tests or, in the worst cases, surgery.