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Osteopathy

Osteopathy is a form of manual therapy that can have beneficial effects for a variety of muscle and joint conditions. An osteopath will spend time talking with you to understand more about you and your symptoms, along with your medical history and lifestyle. I will carry out a thorough examination which will involve touching the area of the body that hurts, and some general movement and specific testing if required. This will help me to provide as accurate a diagnosis as possible for the cause of your pain.

I may ask about other influences which may affect you, such as your daily activities, hobbies, your diet and sleeping patterns. Sometimes the cause of the problem may be in a different area to the pain, so I may examine your whole body.

Osteopaths use a wide range of gentle hands-on techniques that focus on releasing tension, stretching muscles and mobilising joints. This is often used together with exercise and helpful advice designed to help you manage your pain, keep active and maintain the best of health. Your treatment will be tailored to you as an individual, and this helps to ensure you are comfortable with the treatment plan. In some instances, you may be referred you to your GP for further investigation.

Some of the things osteopathy can help with are:

generalised aches and pains including arthritic pain

back and neck pain

headache arising from the neck (cervicogenic) / migraine prevention

frozen shoulder / shoulder and elbow pain / tennis elbow

circulatory problems

muscle spasms

minor sports injuries and tensions

Close up of detail of female physiotherapist doing shoulder blade treatment on patient.

You can find more information about the things we treat here: www.osteopathy.org/what-we-treat

Frequently asked questions:

Q. Will you treat me on my first appointment?

A. In most cases your initial consultation will last up to 60 minutes and include some treatment unless I feel further investigation is needed.

Q. Will the treatment be painful?

A. Osteopathic treatment is designed to be a gentle whole body approach to manual therapy, however some patients may find some treatment techniques uncomfortable and I will talk to you about this as I treat. We are all different! and treatment varies between patients. You may experience mild discomfort afterwards, but in most cases this will resolve within 24-48 hours. 

Q. Don’t you just treat backs?

A. Osteopaths are commonly known for treating back pain and postural problems including changes due to pregnancy, caused by driving or work strain, the pain of arthritis and minor sports injuries. Patients have also found osteopathy helpful for conditions such as headaches, digestive issues, circulatory problems, neuralgia and problems sleeping.

Q. Do I have to be undressed?

I will carry out a postural assessment which involves looking at how you move and stand, so I will ask you to undress to your underwear. You can bring some shorts or other clothes you feel comfortable in to change into. If you don't feel comfortable doing this we can treat you clothed, but remember that some items of clothing, such as jeans, can restrict your movement. A gown will be available for you to wear if you prefer.

Q. Can I bring someone with me to my appointment?

A. You are welcome to bring a friend or family member with you to your appointment, and children under 16 years of age do require a parent or guardian present for us to be able to see them.

Spotlight on: Neck Pain;

One of the commonest problems osteopaths treat is neck pain. There are many reasons for neck or cervical spine pain, and sometimes this can be as a result of changes that occur within the spine as we age. They can be part of the normal ageing process, and sometimes it’s just a niggle but for some the pain can be very debilitating.

As we get older, the discs in our spine ‘dry out’ a little, and as a result get thinner. This can lead to the joint becoming hypermobile, in effect moving around more than normal. The body responds to this by trying to stabilise the joint through additional bony growths or ‘spurs’ around the joint. The fluid in the joint that aids movement can also reduce. These changes may restrict the range of movement in the neck, and create additional friction in and around the joint. The shape of the joints can change, and changes in the position of the neck and head, or inflammatory processes within the joint can lead to our supporting muscles becoming fatigued, overstretched and sore; the muscles may spasm and feel tight and a cascade of changes may follow.

For some people these changes occur without causing any symptoms at all, but other people may experience increasing stiffness and restriction of the neck movement.

Pain may accompany the stiffness, and can range from a dull aching to shock-like pain, sometimes extending into the arms and hands, with accompanying pins and needles, numbness or weakness.

It is not fully understood why some people with degenerative changes within the spine experience little to no symptoms, whilst others suffer a wide range of issues.

If you’re suffering from neck pain, and you’d like help to understand your symptoms and get relief from pain and discomfort, book an appointment online today for a free consultation to help you decide whether osteopathy is for you.

Osteopaths use a wide range of gentle hands-on techniques that focus on releasing tension, stretching muscles and mobilising joints. This is often used together with exercise and helpful advice designed to help you manage your pain, keep active and maintain the best of health. In some instances you may be referred you to your GP for further investigation.

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