What is Osteopathy?
Osteopathy is a holistic complementary healthcare that works with your body in order to re-establish balance. Classical osteopathy places emphasis on the principle that the body is a fully integrated unit of function that is self-healing & self-regulating. The way that an Osteopath works is through their understanding of the relationship that exists between the structure and function of the anatomy, & how they influence each other.
For example, a poor posture where the individual is in a prolonged slouched position will increase the pressure in the abdomen through the direct mechanical force applied by the ribs. Some symptoms that an individual may experience from this include poor digestion, something that a large percentage of the population suffers from. The severity of the symptoms may also depend on the extent of the posture. In addition, this works in reverse as well. An upset stomach may cause an individual to lean over in an effort to reduce the amount of pain being experienced, thus the structure now becomes altered by the function.
Anatomical knowledge has been the cornerstone of osteopathy since it was initially founded. However, understanding normal for a particular individual requires the practitioner to have a certain level of clinical experience as well as being effective in comparative analysis. A skilled practitioner of osteopathy will always listen first to what the body is telling them & then act according to how the body demands.
Osteopathy may be used for a variety of reasons including preventive care, maintenance, alleviating aches & pains, recovering from an injury or accident, or freeing up restrictions in the body that may be holding you back from your daily activities or goals.
What kind of training do the practitioners have?
Our training as OMPs place a focus on the principles of Classical Osteopathy, as defined by the founding father, Dr. Andrew Taylor Still. These principles emphasize the relationship between the structure and function of the anatomy, where the goal of treatment is to establish an environment of self-healing and regulation for the body.
Occasionally you may find that in treatment, a certain area may hurt, but the practitioner works on a very different part of the body. It is not that the practitioner is ignoring your pain, but is searching for the primary cause of the dysfunction, a criteria that is met by the capacity of proper motion. Osteopathy requires not only a vast knowledge of anatomy and physiology, but also requires an understanding of the connection that exists between the two, how structure and function are reciprocally interrelated.
When you have adjusted the physical to its normal demands, Nature universally supplies the remainder.
—Philosophy and Mechanical Principles of Osteopathy.
Therefore, it is important for the practitioner to identify the cause of pain that an individual may be experiencing, and it is only by removing the root cause that the pain can be relieved. Therefore, osteopathic manual practitioners search for the cause rather than treat the symptoms. Our goal of treatment is to provide the best possible care, tailored to the individual, to promote effective and efficient healing.