What Is Osteopathy

Osteopathy is a technique that is based on the treatment principle that focuses on the wellness of a person based on their ligaments, muscles, bones, and a collective tissue function together. For this reason, Osteopathy can be defined as a method of identifying, treating, and avoiding health issues through stretching, movement, and massaging the joints and muscles. The practice is used in conjunction with other therapies like physio or visiting a Dietitian in Hampshire.

Professionals (Osteopaths) apply physical manipulations (massage and stretching); aiming at:

  • Aiding the body to heal
  • Improve blood tissue flow (supply)
  • Relieving muscle tension
  • Improve joint mobility

NOTE: Osteopathy uses various techniques, but does not use surgery or drugs.

In the UK, Osteopathy is regulated by law, which means that it is a well-known and registered health profession. For this reason, it is expected that a professional may use some conventional medical treatment techniques. However, it is important to note that it is not always based on scientific proof.

To get a better understanding of what happens in Osteopathy read on.

When Is Osteopathy Used?

A majority of people who visit an Osteopath, do so for reasons affecting joints, bones, and muscles. Therefore, it includes problems like:

  • Elbows pains (like a tennis elbow)
  • Shoulder pains
  • Neck pains (often complicated and not that which has been caused by an injury like whiplash)
  • Lower back pains
  • Sports injuries
  • Issues with the legs, hips, and pelvis
  • Arthritis
  • Joint and muscle pains associated with pregnancy, work, or driving

If you are pregnant, it is paramount that you seek the services of your physician before seeing an Osteopath. Furthermore, you should consult an Osteopath who is specialised in joint and muscle pain during pregnancy. There are Osteopaths who claim they can treat conditions that are not related to joint, muscle, or tissue-like migraine, headaches, digestive issues, painful periods, excessive baby crying problems (colic), and depression.

The truth is that there is not enough proof to show that Osteopathy treats these issues.

Does Osteopathy Work?

Manual therapy is recommended together with exercises as a treatment method for conditions like back pains. This is based on research by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE). On the other hand, there isn’t enough evidence showing that Osteopathy is effective in treating lower-limb, shoulder, and neck pains or while recovering from a knee or hip operation.

Also, there isn’t enough evidence to show that it can treat any other health conditions that are not related to muscles or bones.

To know more on proven facts about Osteopathy; read on Evidence On Osteopathy.

How to Access Osteopathy

The truth is that Osteopathy is a profession that is not widely available. However, by simply consulting the NHS or local CCG (clinical commissioning group), they should be in tell you if it is available within your area. A majority of people pay for Osteopathy services privately. As such, the treatment costs will vary. However, the cost ranges between £35 to £50 for about a 30-minute service.

The good news is that you do not need to be referred by your GP to see an Osteopath privately. That is because a majority of insurance providers offer osteopathic treatment coverage. Nevertheless, only professionals registered with the GOsC (General Osteopathic Council) are legally allowed to identify themselves as Osteopaths.

Over the first session with the Osteopathy, the professional will try to know your symptom, general health, and other medical treatment you have undergone (medical history). After this, the professional will use their hands to find areas of weakness, restriction, tenderness, and strains within the body.

Of course, with your consent, you will probably need to remove some clothing so that they can examine the area. You will need to perform some simple movements.