13 Jul 2022
What To Expect from Receiving Osteopathy
13 Jul 2022
Osteopathy has become a go to treatment for many people and has become increasingly popular. Although it’s popular, it seems like people either know what it is and are into it, while others have no idea what it is, how it works and what it can help with. In this blog we will touch on what it’s like to see an osteopath, what they look for and do, and what visits might be like!
When first visiting an osteopath, the practitioner would outline what to expect. In the first visit they will be assessing/diagnosing and treating the whole body and giving you a general treatment. It’s important to note right off the get go that Osteopaths do not treat conditions.
What does this mean?
Osteopaths have no treatment protocol for asthma or cancer. They need their thinking to be particular and the treatment to be specific to that patient on that day.
Osteopaths have an understanding of the methodology for understanding the nature of the cause of lesioning. Treating the liver directly is unnecessary if there has been a load disturbance that, over time, has put a congestive stain on the organ’s ability to function to its full capacity. Once such a cause is determined, we must then be able to work from the health of the body to its most painful/lesioned parts to return vitality and the potential for longevity.
The body is self healing and self regulating. They work with the body to return health and well-being; they do not impose treatment on the body. If they employ more aggressive methods, patients outcomes could progress rather poorly. It might be too much at the wrong time, leading to aggravation of the condition and/or an inability to stabilize and take on the treatment.
Osteopaths have no techniques, each person’s body tells its own story. Therefore when a patient comes into the office with a sore knee, no two patients are getting the same treatment for that sore knee.
What is an Osteopathic diagnosis composed of?
Osteopathic diagnosis comprises physical examination of the entire body- skeletal, somatic, and visceral, nervous and glandular, its distinguishing feature being an intensive search for and study of the osteopathic lesion.
They accomplish this by using short and long lever, direct and indirect and balance approaches, amplitude, rate, rhythm, axes and planes. The qualities are perfected with their knowledge of functional anatomy and by observing how the body works as a collective unit of function. The anatomy mirrors the mechanics!
Classical Osteopaths Follow these Principles:
Four principles of practice
- The body is a dynamic unit of function
- The body is self-healing and self-regulating and self-maintaining
- Structure and function are interrelated
- Rational treatment is based on an understanding of these principle
What is a general Treatment?
General treatment provides the practitioner with a basis for practice. It can be used to improve the constitution and the vitality of the patient, and integrates (and correlates) the entire structure. General treatment has multiple implications from both a therapeutic and diagnostic perspective. A general treatment improves constitution and vitality by improving overall health and removing lesioning and dysfunction to mobilize a patient’s own self-healing and self-correcting mechanisms.
This will ‘clear any smoke’ and stabilize the body where the practitioner can ‘dig deeper’ into the root cause of the patient’s pain.
What do we mean by stabilization?
Stability concerns the ability of the body, when disturbed from a state of equilibrium to revert back to original condition.
Treatment is not always immediately adjusted, but instead eventually leads to stabilization.
Osteopathic treatment does not take place when the patient is on the table, but rather through somatic responses after treatment is applied. For this reason, the patient must be given enough time to respond to treatment in order for physiological changes from the treatment to stabilize. This is the reason your Osteopath will ask you not to stretch after a treatment, but instead go about your life thinking ‘loose’ and do not physically stretch since the body is already working to take on its ‘newself’ and stretching will simply put everything back to where it was before the treatment.
What happens during a visit?
During each visit the practitioner will do an assessment that will require you to come into a variety of different positions to assess functionality of the body and identify any potential restrictions.
Oftentimes the patient will receive treatment laying on a massage like treatment table. It’s suggested that patients wear comfortable clothing they can move freely in.
Follow up Treatments
Each time you see an Osteopath the treatment is different. It may seem like they are assessing and touching the same things however the body tells a different story each time it walks into the office. Bones form lines, lymph forms lines, nerves form lines, blood forms lines, muscles form lines, facaia forms lines. And each individual body has its own lines of tension. Its own lesion story. Its own compensation story. This is what makes Osteopathy different from other modalities. We need to take in consideration the whole body and that nothing functions in isolation. We need to keep in mind all those layers of lines, feel for what the body is telling us, piece together their lines of tension or restrictions.
We find it, fix it, and leave it alone. Let the body self heal and self regulate, as it tries to do 24 hours a day. Less restrictions means more efficient clean up within the body. Each body that walks through the office tells a different story of its lesions it has experienced in the past- therefore each treatment is individualized to that person on that day.
If any of this piques your interest, book an appointment with our Osteopathic Manual Practitioner, Malerie at Natural Choice Medical Clinic. If you are unsure if she can help you, just call us at 519-265-8035 and we would be happy to help you figure that out!
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