What is Osteopathy?
Osteopathy is a way of detecting and treating damaged parts of the body such as muscles, ligaments, nerves and joints. When the body is balanced and efficient, just like a well tuned engine, it will function with the minimum wear and tear, leaving more energy for living.
What do Osteopaths treat?
Osteopaths treat a variety of common conditions including changes to posture in pregnancy; repetitive strain injury, postural problems caused by driving or work strain, the pain of arthritis and sports injuries.
- Commonly treated symptoms include
- Back Pain
- Neck and Shoulder Pain
- Arthritic Pain
- Repetitive Strain Injury
- General Aches and Pains
- Hip and Knee Pain
- Sports injuries
What to expect at a treatment?
Osteopaths consider each person as an individual. On your first visit, the osteopath will spend time taking a detailed medical history including important information about your lifestyle and diet. You will normally be asked to perform a series of simple movements; this will allow a full diagnosis and treatment plan tailored to your needs. You will then also receive a treatment; with their hands the osteopath identifies abnormalities within the human body structure and function. They then facilitate the body’s ability to heal itself through a variety of stretching, mobilising and manipulative techniques. With added exercises and health advice, the Osteopath will help to reduce your symptoms and improve your health and quality of life.
Within an Osteopathic treatment, the practitioner may use Ultrasound. Therapeutic ultrasound is a modality that has been used by physiotherapists since the 1940s. Ultrasound is applied using the head of an ultrasound probe that is placed in direct contact with your skin via a transmission coupling gel.
Therapeutic ultrasound has been shown to cause increases in:
- healing rates
- tissue relaxation
- tissue heating
- local blood flow
- scar tissue breakdown.
The effect of ultrasound via an increase in local blood flow can be used to help reduce local swelling and chronic inflammation, and, according to some studies, promote bone fracture healing. The intensity or power density of the ultrasound can be adjusted depending on the desired effect. A greater power density (measured in watt/cm2) is often used in cases where scar tissue breakdown is the goal.
The most common conditions treated with ultrasound include soft tissue injuries such as tendonitis (or tendinitis if you prefer), non-acute joint swelling and muscle spasm. Most muscle and ligament injuries can benefit from therapeutic ultrasound.
Craniosacral Therapy is a gentle way of working with the body using light touch. People sometimes ask about the name Craniosacral Therapy and think it only refers to the head. In fact Craniosacral Therapy works with the whole person and changes may occur in body, mind and spirit during and after sessions.
When a Craniosacral therapist places her hands lightly on you, she is using them to listen to you in much the same way that a counsellor might listen to your words. Your body responds to this sensitive touch by beginning to listen to itself. A feeling that you have been heard in the truest sense of the word is a common experience during and after a Craniosacral session.
People may come for Craniosacral Therapy because they have acute physical problems like headaches or bad backs, or long-standing problems both physical and emotional. Others come for ongoing support in their busy lives and for help to meet life’s challenges.
Because it is so gentle and non-invasive, Craniosacral Therapy is suitable for everyone from newborns to the elderly. Mothers and babies often come for problems associated with difficult or traumatic births. Letting go of tension and fear held in the body enables both to settle into calmness.
Craniosacral Therapy supports your body’s innate ability to balance, restore and heal itself, as well as helping to reduce stress and build your underlying energy. The practitioner senses tensions in the body and helps to release them in a supported and comfortable way. During or after a session you may feel calm and energised, with increased clarity of mind and a feeling of well-being.
The ultrasound waves are generated by a piezoelectric effect caused by the vibration of crystals within the head of the probe. The ultrasound waves that pass through the skin cause a vibration of the local soft tissues. This vibration or cavitation can cause a deep heating locally though usually no sensation of heat will be felt by the patient. In situations where a heating effect is not desirable, such as a fresh injury with acute inflammation, the ultrasound can be
Rehabilitative taping technique to facilitate the body’s natural healing process. Provides support and stability to muscles and joints without restricting the body’s range of motion and prolongs the benefits of the treatment. Longer sessions facilitates lymphatic drainage by microscopically lifting the skin.