Osteopathy is based around four core principles.
1. The body is a unit
The body should be looked at as a whole and not broken down into individual
sections because everything is connected. No joint or muscle works in isolation, it is
part of a whole.
2. The body has self-healing and self-regulatory mechanisms
The body has the inherent ability to heal itself provided it has adequate blood and
nerve supply. The job of the osteopath is to aid the body in utilizing its own healing
mechanisms to overcome disease and maintain health.
3. Structure and function are interrelated
The musculoskeletal system can reflect changes in and can produce changes in other
body systems. For example, women who are suffering menstrual pain can also
experience back pain or abdominal cramps, men who are suffering kidney stones
will also experience flank pain and muscle spasms, those with a cold who have been
coughing a lot will have back muscle spasms etc. If you calm down the
musculoskeletal presentation, the other body systems can respond in kind.
4. Rational treatment is based on the above three principles
Rational treatment occurs when the above three principles are observed, therefore
the total care of the patient taken care of.
What can Osteopathy do for you?
Osteopathic treatment aims to treat the whole patient and they can work on joints, ligaments,
muscles, tendons, and fascia. Osteopaths have a wide variety of tools that they can utilise including
but not limited to:
- Soft tissue
- Muscle energy techniques
- High velocity, low amplitude (HVLA) techniques/manipulations
- Counter strain
- Indirect techniques
Some conditions that Osteopaths can help with but limited to are:
- Lower back pain
- Neck pain
- Rib sprains
- Shoulder pain
- Knee pain
- Foot/ankle pain
- TMJ disorders
- Chronic pain
- Gut disturbances
Osteopathy was founded by A. T. Still in the late 19th Century because he believed that the current
medical practices of the times often caused significantly more harm than good. At the time, Still was
trained and practiced as a physician but he wished to seek an alternative mode of treatment due to
the unsanitary conditions that surgeries were performed in, often leading to death, and common
medications that were prescribed including arsenic, whiskey, and opium.
Still investigated many forms of alternative therapies including hydrotherapy, diet, and bonesetting
and was happy that they had relatively safer side effects. He believed that the future of medicine
would consist of the manipulation of the musculoskeletal system and very little use of medication
and thus he invented Osteopathy. The name comes from two Greek words osteon – for bone and
–pathos for suffering in order to convey his theory that disease and dysfunction were grounded in
the musculoskeletal system and thus by treating this system, physicians could treat a variety of
diseases without the use of drugs. Still is one of the first physicians to focus on treating the disease,
not just the symptoms and aiming towards preventative medicine.
Still founded the first school of Osteopathy in 1892 called the American School of Osteopathy (now
the A.T. Still University) in Kirksville, Missouri.
If you still unsure about what osteopathy is call 9486 7543 to find out if it could benefit you!