Osteopathy is a form of complementary health care which treats the body’s musculoskeletal system by treating not just the symptoms of the patient, but looking for the root cause of their presenting complaint. It promotes complete body health by diagnosing and treating the muscles, tendons and joints with the goal of improving the circulatory, lymphatic and nervous systems. The philosophy of osteopathy is based, in part, on the belief that the body has a built-in self-regulatory system and is able to repair itself. Osteopaths are of the opinion that the movement of body fluids is critical to health maintenance and that nerves play and important part in this body fluid movement.
Osteopathic diagnosis includes listening to the patient’s history, thorough examinations of muscles and joints and observing movement patterns. X-rays, scans and other clinical investigations are also used if required. A wide range of gentle, non-invasive manual techniques such as deep tissue massage, joint articulation and manipulation are applied therapeutically as the treatment, with exercises given to complete in-between treatment sessions.
Osteopaths do not only treat acute pain such as sports injuries or long standing chronic problems, but also help maintain and improve a healthy well rounded approach to life. It is also important to address each patient individually and formulate a realistic treatment plan that encompasses reducing any future risk of injury or pain. For this reason Osteopathy can treat the expectant mother or new born baby right through to the nonagenarian.
Osteopathy follows 4 founding principles-
The rule of the Artery is supreme, anything with a healthy blood supply should function correctly.
Structure governs function- structure and function are interrelated, structural compromise equals functional compromise.
In the right conditions the body is self healing. As manual therapists we can not heal injured tissue, we aim to treat the body to put it in a state in which it can heal itself more efficiently.
The body is a unit and must be treated as a whole. Dysfunction in one area of the body may present as pain in another.
All Osteopaths are registered with the General Osteopathic Council and are members of the British Osteopathic Association.