What is Osteopathy?
Osteopaths are healthcare professionals trained to treat and diagnose a wide range of health issues and treat musculoskeletal problems that occur due to various injuries, stresses or disease. The body always strives to work as efficiently as possible; osteopathic treatment is designed to help your body return to a natural state of balance so that you can live as pain-free as possible.
Osteopaths are regulated in the UK by the General Osteopathic Council. To become an osteopath, a minimum of four years of degree level training is required alongside over 1000 hours of contact time with patients within training clinics.
Osteopathy can be beneficial for people of all ages from newborn babies to the elderly. Osteopathy has shown to be beneficial for people suffering from:
• Generalised aches and pains
• Arthritic pain
• Muscle spasms
• Headaches arising from the neck
• Migraine prevention
• General, acute and chronic back pain
• Circulatory problems
• Digestion problems
• Joint pains
• Rheumatic pain
What to expect from your first appointment
At the start of your first appointment, a thorough case history will be taken. This will involve asking you questions about your symptoms, medical history and lifestyle. This information is essential as it allows an accurate diagnosis and forms a tailor-made treatment plan. This is followed by an examination of the area(s) of your body causing you discomfort. The osteopath will be looking for any tightness in the muscles or stiffness in the joints and may need to touch these areas to identify any problems.
What to wear
The osteopath may need to see the areas of your body that are causing you discomfort, so it may be necessary to remove some clothing during your appointment. It is essential that you feel comfortable and at ease during your appointment. If you feel uncomfortable undressing in your underwear, you are more than welcome to wear shorts and a t-shirt instead.
After your diagnosis, a treatment plan which is tailor-made for you, your lifestyle and your current symptoms will be decided. After you are happy with the treatment plan, treatment begins typically in the first session. Different techniques such as gentle hands-on techniques that focus on releasing the tension, stretching muscles and mobilising the joints will be used. You may also be given some stretching or simple exercises to do at home along with some helpful advice to help you relieve/manage your pain and keep you active.
Is the treatment painful?
Osteopathic techniques are usually very gentle, and the osteopath will work very hard to make your treatment as painless as possible. Some people experience some mild discomfort after treatment, but this will generally resolve within 24-48 hours.
You are very welcome to bring someone with you to your appointment. If you would like any further information about osteopathy or would like to discuss your symptoms with our osteopath further before making an appointment, please speak to reception.