Osteopathy: Your Questions Answered

Health & Medical Blog

Osteopathy is not a type of medicine, but it is a form of treatment. It is based on the principle that some problems in the body are caused by restrictions in, or lack of mobility of, the muscles and fascia. This article answers some questions you may have about osteopathy.

What is an osteopath?

An osteopath is a health professional who has received specialist training in the diagnosis and treatment of musculoskeletal conditions. Osteopaths work on the whole body, although their focus is mainly on the spine, mainly due to the significant relation between musculoskeletal problems diagnosed in the spine and symptoms originating from elsewhere in the body. Osteopaths focus on the musculoskeletal system and not just on the bones and muscles. Osteopaths treat muscles, tendons, ligaments, joint capsules, synovial fluid, nerves and skin. They recognise that just treating musculoskeletal problems is only part of the picture — it is also necessary to identify the cause of a problem and fix it.

Osteopathy has strong links with chiropractic medicine. They are both forms of comprehensive musculoskeletal medicine. Chiropractors have traditionally based their practice on the link between vertebral subluxation and its effects on the rest of the body. Osteopaths also have a historical link to chiropractors through the practice of spinal manipulation, although recent research in this area has shown that manipulative techniques are not necessary for effective treatment. Osteopaths also refer to themselves as physical medicine practitioners (PMPs).

Which conditions can an osteopath treat?

Osteopaths can help patients with a wide range of conditions, including:

Back and neck pain

Osteopaths can help to treat lower back and neck pain. Osteopathy may also be helpful for other spinal problems such as herniated discs, sciatica and scoliosis.

Repetitive strain injury (RSI)/work-related disorders

Osteopaths can help treat tendonitis, plantar fasciitis, carpal tunnel syndrome and repetitive motion injuries which are often the result of poor conditions in the workplace or limited mobility during your working day.

How do osteopaths work with other professionals?

Osteopathy is happy to work alongside other treatments to suit individual needs. Osteopaths may refer you to a medical doctor if they feel conditions outside their area of expertise would be better addressed by a medical practitioner, for example, if you have acute illness, cancer or need an operation. Osteopaths often work with physiotherapists and chiropractors. They may also utilise the services of a nutritionist or acupuncturist.

For more info, contact a local osteopath clinic today.


12 May 2021

Staying Healthy from the Inside Out

Thanks for visiting my health blog! My name's Caroline. A few years ago, I started to notice changes in my appearance. My hair was dull, my eyes were circled with dark rings, and my skin was looking like it used to when I was a teenager. When cosmetic treatments didn't fix things, I realised the problem wasn't on the outside of my body—it was on the inside! That's when I started researching how to keep myself healthy. To my surprise, improving my internal health really worked. A few years down the line, I feel and look better than ever, and I'm ready to share what I've learned with all of you.