osteo, osteopathy, back pain

Pan out about Osteopathy

Osteopathy is another type of the modern-day alternative medicines. The name osteopathy was given by dr Andrew Still to his own system in 1883, after he realised the importance of the bones, muscles, ligaments and connective tissue functioning properly together in order to a person’s wellbeing. The definition of osteopathy may vary in different countries, but its core principle is that osteopathy – or osteopathie – emphasizes the physical manipulation of the muscle tissue and bones.
As the other alternative treatments, osteopathy is a form of drug-free, manual medicine. It aims to provide complete, whole-body health to individuals by treating, massaging and strengthening the musculoskeletal framework.
It is important to know that it is not a preventive method; osteopathy only treats existing problems and pains. Significant improvement in mobility and structural stability of the body can be observed as the biggest benefits of osteopathy.

What does an osteopath do?

Osteopathy is practiced by osteopaths. Most people see an osteopath while seeking aid with sore back, neck pain, shoulder pain, sciatica or other problems related to muscles and joints. Osteopaths use a broad range of special and professional grips and techniques such as soft-tissue stretching, deep pressure, tactile stimulation, or mobilisation of joints in order to intervene with pain and discomfort.
To enjoy the benefits of osteopathy, at the first visit to an osteopath, as a patient you will have to tell about your complete medical history, about your lifestyle, recent diets and all symptoms and discomfort in your body even if they may seem unrelated to your current problem. It is all important for the osteopath so they can refer the best treatments to you; or specialist as osteopaths often treat together with a general practitioner, dentist, podiatrist or other health-care professionals.

Osteopath or chiropractor?

Chiropractic profession is another alternative medicine, and might be better known than osteopathy. Although they deal with similar kinds of symptoms of the body, doctors of chiropractic treat more specific and smaller areas in a particular region of the body. Both professions use similar techniques, but chiropractic might not be for all, as it tends to use more forceful and powerful manual treatments.

How osteopathy can help?

Osteopathy treats a lot more than you think. Although most patients turn to osteopaths with sore back or neck pain, many other patients can enjoy the benefits of osteopathy. Like those with aches in the head, and ankle or foot pain; sciatica; shin splints; asthma; arthritis; tennis elbow; whiplash; postural problems or repetitive strain injury.

The “common” back pain

80% of nowadays’ population suffer from back pain or sore back from extensive sitting or standing, heavy lifting, injury, pregnancy, muscle weakness or inadequate flexibility.
Back stretches are the most used self-healing treatments for back pain. They can be very effective. However, in conjunction with stretches, osteopaths use a wide range of gentle manual treatments such as massaging the soft tissues of one’s back; rhythmically “rock” the joints to release tension or to smoothly loosen them. The less serious back pains can resolve within a few weeks when treated well.

In case of sciatica

Sciatica refers to pain that runs along the sciatic nerve. The pain usually affects one side of the lower back at a time, but can extend all the way down to the thighs or even ankle of the patient in worst cases.
It can be resolved quickly with the appropriate osteopathic management and self-care. Typical treatments aim to relieve pressure and inflammation, and include spinal mobilisation of the lower lumbar spine, massage to release muscle cramps, articulation of the affected joints and different rehabilitation exercises.


In seeking aim for headaches, visiting an osteopath is advised as well. Tender massage to the muscles of the neck or thorax and manipulation of the joints can ease the built-up muscular tension, which can be of one the reasons for headaches. In other cases, osteopaths can recommend exercises, and lifestyle or posture changes to help with the pain and discomfort.
If you have other conditions then the ones listed above, still do not hesitate to contact one of you local osteopaths as they might still be able to help.