What is Osteopathy?
Osteopathy is a form of manual medicine which views the body as a whole and aims to treat the cause of a problem rather than just the symptoms.
Osteopaths assist healing by focusing on how the skeleton, joints, muscles, nerves, circulation, connective tissue and internal organs function together as a single unit.
Conditions are treated through the use of manual therapy, combined with traditional medical knowledge. More specifically, manipulations and techniques which are used to assess, prevent and treat various ailments, including those of the musculoskeletal, visceral, autonomic nervous and cranial-sacral systems.
WHAT CAN OSTEOPATHY TREAT
Neck & Low back pain
Rib & Intercostal pains
Sports injuries Muscle strains
Hernias & p
Repetitive strain injury
Postural problems, Scars
Headaches & migraines
Dizziness & vertigo
Carpel tunnel syndrome
Stress & adrenal fatigue
Arthritic pains Osteoarthritis
Shoulder, elbow, wrist, knee
& ankle sprains
Post surgery scars & mobilisation
Overlapped cranial bones
Gastritis, Hiatal hernia
Crohn's Disease symptoms
Acute & chronic colics
Osteopathy is based on 4 fundamental principles
The body is a unit, and the person represents a combination of body, mind and spirit.
Structure and function are reciprocally interrelated.
Rational treatment is based on an understanding of these principles: body unity,
self-regulation, and the interrelationship of structure and function.
The body is capable of self-regulation, self-healing and health maintenance.
Osteopathy for Sports, Rehabilitation and Athletic Preparation
Osteopathy is beneficial not only to help recover from injuries but also prevent them, in athletes as well as people who simply enjoy sports and exercise to keep fit.
Improving Athletic Performance
Osteopathy is being used more and more by high profile athletes and sports teams internationally. Because of Osteopathy's holistic approach the athletes body is viewed as a whole allowing the therapist to better understand the cause of an underlying problem and not being limited just to the muscular-skeletal system.
How can Osteopathy help my injuries?
Reduce painful symptoms through manual techniques
Treat the injury as well as any compensations created by the body
Refer for X-ray or Ultrasound
Refer to a specialist doctor if necessary
Provide a rehabilitation programme
Give ongoing treatment to prevent future injury
Improve overall sporting performance
Assist your return to sport as quickly as possible
Osteopathy for Infants & Children
Osteopathy is a gentle treatment suitable for babies and children. Osteopaths utilise a range of gentle techniques including cranial therapy.
Cranial techniques are safe, gentle and non-manipulative. They are often used when treating young children and newborn infants. Osteopaths work under the principle that there may be a number of contributing factors to the symptoms and will therefore evaluate not only the area which is producing the symptoms, but also associated areas that may be contributing to the issue.
Infants & Babies
Reflux, colic, plagiocephaly & torticollis, latching difficulties, irritability, breech babies.
Children & Teenagers
Headaches, neck & back pain, knee pain, ear infections, postural problems, low foot arches.
Fiona, Belinda, Brita & Cedric can treat infants and babies under the age of 5.
Bianca treats children aged 5+ years.
What techniques do Osteopaths use?
Osteopaths use a wide variety of techniques to create a unique treatment for each patient.
Soft Tissue Techniques
Consist of a rhythmic stretching, deep pressure and traction. Its purpose is to move tissue fluids and to relax hypertonic muscles and myofascial layers associated with somatic dysfunction.
HVLA (High-Velocity Low-Aplitude)
Joint manipulation is often referred to by Osteopaths as an High velocity, low amplitude or ‘HVLA’. This is a gentle, safe and effective technique designed to restore the normal movement to a joint (any joint in the body) that is stuck or not moving properly.
These techniques are used to evaluate and treat the
dynamics of motion and suspension in relation to organs, membranes, fascia and ligaments. Visceral Osteopathy increases proprioceptive communication within the body.
*Please note only Fiona, Cedric, and Brita are qualified in cranial techniques.
Inside the skull there is a covering over the brain, the dura, that continues down inside the spine to the tailbone or sacrum, protecting and supporting the central nervous system. This central nervous system controls the functioning of every organ, muscle and nerve in the body.
Cranial Osteopathy is a systematic approach to patient diagnosis and treatment utilizing the body's inherent, third wave impulse, emanating from the central nervous system and the fluctuation of cerebrospinal fluid. This is called Cranial Rhythmic Impulse (CRI).
This gentle, manual technique uses the CRI to treat the whole person, emphasizing the head and spinal regions.
During fascial unwinding, the therapist stimulates mechanoreceptors in the fascia by applying gentle touch and stretching. Touch and stretching induce relaxation and activate the parasympathetic nervous system. They also activate the central nervous system, which is involved in the modulation of muscle tone as well as movement.
As a result, the central nervous system is aroused and thereby responds by encouraging muscles to find an easier, or more relaxed, position and by introducing the ideomotor action. Although the ideomotor action is generated via normal voluntary motor control systems, it is altered and experienced as an involuntary response.
- Minasny B. Understanding the Process of Fascial Unwinding (2009) Int J Ther Massage Bodywork. 2(3): 10–17.
Muscle Energy Techniques
Involving a powerful yet gentle series of techniques that can be utilized on any muscle of the body to restore normal range of motion and mechanical function.
What a Muscle Energy technique does is normalize the stretch reflex to its proper place. It normalizes the output of the motor neuron so that the muscle can instinctively relax to a normal state. No amount of massage or heat or stretching can do this.
Muscle Energy techniques are what we call “integrative” techniques, which means we spend most of the treatment correcting misaligned joints, compacted vertebra, and sheered viscera, Muscle Energy techniques are used to integrate these changes in the body and help them stay.
Pelvic Health Osteopathy
Pelvic health issues such as prolapse, incontinence, sexual dysfunction or pain, falling onto your tailbone, struggling to sit or walk without discomfort, as well as pregnancy-related issues such as pelvic girdle pain, perineum and C-section scar care are all conditions which may need to be treated by a pelvic osteopath.
Please note Brita is currently our only Osteopath qualified for Pelvic Health techniques. To book an appointment you can do so online or call us.
What conditions can a Pelvic Osteopath treat?
Pregnancy-related issues (e.g. pelvic girdle pain)
Post-natal care (C-section scar and perineal tear/episiotomy scar management)
Tailbone-related pain (e.g. from falls onto tailbone)
Incontinence (bowel or bladder)
Pelvic organ prolapse
Gynaecological surgery - post surgery management
Pelvic pain (female and male)
Pain during or after intercourse
What is the treatment like?
During your initial consultation, your Pelvic Health Osteopath will take a detailed case history of your condition as well as any other conditions you wish to share. They will take into consideration past and present conditions/injuries as well as your physical and mental health in order to create a treatment plan tailored to your needs.
Evaluation and treatment consist of external gentle techniques in and around the pelvic region. Your evaluation may include an internal assessment of the pelvic floor muscles which could be completed vaginally (females) or rectally (males & females). Your osteopath will discuss this option and receive your consent before initiating this exam.