Osteopathy aims then to use this information to formulate an appropriate treatment plan. It is possible that various systemic problems can mimic back pain e.g., renal problems, and if this cannot be excluded then the Osteopath will need to refer you back to your G. P. for tests.
Once the Osteopath has established that the problem you are suffering from is treatable within the parameters of their skills, a treatment plan will be formulated and depending on many factors it may require just one or two visits, or a longer course. Osteopaths treat using their hands and techniques will vary from person to person.
It generally will involve some articulation by stretching or quick movements known as High Velocity Thrusts ( HVT ) which are used specifically to improve joint movement. Soft Tissue massage is used to release the tight muscle groups that may be restricting movement. These types of techniques, are often followed through by giving the patient exercises and other treatment aids to do at home.
Another form of treatment is known as Cranial Osteopathy, and this focuses on improving the state of the fluid surrounding the spinal cord and brain, ultimately improving the nervous system, which in turn helps the overall healing process.
Osteopaths are also keen to advise on areas which may have caused your problem or aggravated it, so don't be surprised if they ask you what car you drive or what work you do. They are not assessing your bank balance, merely looking at different aspects of your posture and lifestyle.
Osteopathy is generally only available privately although many more health services are paying to include it under the N.H.S. Fees vary from person to person, it is always important to ask the fees before you book your first appointment. Many private health insurance schemes will pay for Osteopathy.
All Osteopaths have to belong to be members of a Register now, so for details of your nearest osteopath or further information Tel: 0207 357 6655 or search the osteopaths database within the site.
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