Osteopathy is a manual type of physical therapy aimed at restoring the natural balance of the body. Massaging soft and connective tissues, articulating limbs, or muscle, joint, and tendon manipulation may be involved. Osteopathy, however is a gentle, non-invasive form of treatment that should not cause undue discomfort and is part of a holistic approach to good health. Do you want to learn more? Click Elementary Health.
Your osteopath will ask you questions at the beginning of your treatment about your medical history (including any accidents or trauma), lifestyle and general sense of well-being, as well as the more accurate nature of your complaint. It is advisable to bring this material to an initial examination if you have recently undergone x-rays or tests. Your osteopath may also want to test your coordination and reflexes, and your blood pressure.
A thorough physical examination that will examine your bones, joints, muscles, ligaments and tendons will then follow this. Your osteopath may also want to test your arms, legs and back for flexibility, and will also look at your spine carefully, perhaps examining your posture and balance. You may be asked to remove your top layers of clothing during an initial examination or subsequent osteopathic treatment sessions to allow your osteopath to obtain a clearer view of your body and the affected area.
Your osteopath will decide on a personalised treatment plan as a result of this examination and will share with you the process as well as the results that can be expected as the treatment progresses, along with an expected treatment timeframe. It may be that only a few osteopathic sessions are necessary, perhaps followed by an occasional check-up, or a regular course of treatment may be recommended by your osteopath.
At this time, your osteopath may also discuss with you changes that you may be able to make to your lifestyle or working habits that will help alleviate or prevent your condition from returning in the future. This may include some exercises being given to perform at home, or resting the affected part of the body.
During an osteopathic treatment session, Osteopathic Manipulative Treatment (OMT) is often used. As the osteopath gently applies a precise amount of physical pressure to a specific location, perhaps the affected area, but also possibly at another point in the body, a patient may sit or lie on a table. The objective of this is to relax the tissues where the patient feels pain or discomfort in order to restore the balance of muscle and tissue, relieve limited joints and promote the flow of body fluids. When you hear a clicking or popping noise, OMT may sometimes require a short, forceful movement called a high-speed thrust. This is not agonising and is completely normal and to be expected.