We are fully regulated by the General Osteopathic Council, after undergoing a four year degree in Osteopathic Medicine, and are obliged to complete at least 30 hours per year of continued professional development. I am also a member of The Institute Of Osteopathy.
What Is Osteopathy?
Osteopathy is a highly recognised and well established physical therapy that utilises medical science with basic Osteopathic principles to get you out of pain as quickly as possible with the best long term outcomes. We use similar techniques to other physical therapies such as:
* Soft Tissue Technique
* HVT (Joint Mobilisation)
* MET (Muscle Energy Technique)
* Functional and Counter Strain Techniques
...however we have a philosophy founded on our basic principles that is fundamental to our success as first line medical practitioners.
Where is the pain coming from?
Firstly we must use our medical knowledge to establish the correct diagnosis. For example, where you are experiencing the pain may not necessarily be where the pain is coming from. It may be referred pain, or it could be a nerve that is compressed further away. This is only a part of the problem as quite often this is the result of many other factors that have contributed to the injury.
Why is my pain not going away?
For Osteopaths this is the most interesting question as the body has it's own self healing mechanisms, meaning that under normal circumstances your body should be able to heal itself, For example when you get a cough or cold, quite often these may resolve of their own accord. The same should be true with physical injuries however most often the cause of the problem is neglected.
What is causing my pain?
The reason you are in pain could be dependent on many factors, and more often than not, diagnosis is only the last place your body can adapt. This could be as a result of what you are doing every day in your job, it could be the result of genetic structure, and it could be the result of previous injuries you may have had. For example if you drive all day every day, certain muscles will work hard and the consistency over time starts to tighten these muscles and pull joints out of position. Your body will then adapt to compensate meaning other areas then work harder to share the workload. The same can be said if you have previous torn ligaments. Your body will adapt to either protect or cover up this weakness, and here is where we can start to work out what has led to the current injury.
What can I do to help?
One of our Osteopathic principles tells us that both structure and function are reciprocally interrelated. This means that if a joint is structurally imbalanced, it's function will also falter. Osteopaths will start by looking at where the problem started and work from here. Things you can do at home may include stretching or strengthening but these are dependent on what is causing the problem and will be fully explained in your treatment. Ice or heat may also be useful.
When to use ice or heat?
Generally speaking ice is used for reducing inflammation, and heat is used for easing aching muscles. When treating torn muscles and ligaments it is possible to use a combination of the two to initiate the repair process, but you should always ask if ever you are unsure.