What is Osteopathy?
A treatment using techniques such as stretching, massaging and mobilisation of specific joints and soft tissues, osteopathy is a form of manual medicine which recognises the important link between the structure of the body and the way it functions.
Osteopaths focus on how the skeleton, joints, muscles, nerves, circulation, connective tissue and internal organs function as a holistic unit. Using skilled evaluation, diagnosis and a wide range of hands-on techniques, osteopaths can identify important types of dysfunction in your body.
In Australia, osteopaths are government registered practitioners who complete a minimum of five years’ university training in anatomy, physiology, pathology, general medical diagnosis and osteopathic techniques. Osteopaths are primary healthcare practitioners and are trained to recognise conditions which require medical referral. They are also trained to perform standard medical examinations of the musculoskeletal, cardiovascular, respiratory and nervous systems.
Osteopathy is covered by most private health funds and the Medicare Enhanced Primary Care scheme. Osteopaths are registered providers for workers’ compensation schemes, motor accident insurers and the Department of Veterans’ Affairs.
The conditions that Osteopaths deal with:
Osteopathy treat of a wide variety of musculo-skeletal problems, but it also has a role to play in the management of a number of other conditions. The most common complaints for which patients consult Osteopaths include:
- Work-related and repetitive strain injuries
- Sports-related injuries
- Pains in peripheral joints such as shoulders, knees and ankles, tendinitis and muscle strains,
- Back and neck pain
Especially for mothers-to-be for back pain reduction during pregnancy and for birth preparation
Osteopathy can also play a significant role in pain management or when used in conjunction with medical treatment. In addition, there is a wide variety of gentle non-manipulative techniques for use on infants and small children.
The treatment process
- The initial consultation:
Your initial consultation will firstly involve us asking a series of questions about your pain or injury so that we can fully understand what the problem is, how and why it has occurred, and why it has not resolved itself.
- Tailoring an individual treatment plan:
Once we know why your pain is there, we can tailor an individual treatment plan to you. We will examine and treat your pain, addressing not only the painful and tight areas that you complain of, but also other related areas that you probably didn’t know were sore.
Your problems will be explained, and you will be provided with practical advice that will not only help you manage your current problem but also prevent it from occurring in the future.
- The Treatment: Due to our ‘hands on approach’ to treatment and our ‘whole body approach’ to your health, we do require you to undress during the consultation. This usually means undressing down to your underwear whilst treatment is being undertaken, so we ask that you wear appropriate underwear. Women can wear short leggings or tight shorts over their underwear if they prefer. Hospital– type gowns are provided if you would like one and usually offered upon first consultation. If one is not offered, please ask your osteopath if you would like one, and they will be happy to oblige. In some instances, where your problem is quite chronic in nature, deeper muscle work or slightly stronger techniques may be required to address deeper structures. We will always explain why we are doing what we are doing, but feel free to mention any concerns that you have at any time throughout the consultation. Some treatment modalities such as deep tissue massage or other soft tissue modalities or manipulation can be painful when being addressed by your Osteopath. Tolerable pain levels differ from person to person, so if you find that the treatment is too painful for you to manage, please give your Osteopath feedback and we can adjust our pressure.
- Determining number of consultations/treatments:
Different conditions and individuals will require a different number of treatments to help get you back on track. In general, the longer you have had a condition, the longer it may take to resolve or become properly managed.
Some people find they only need a few consultations, some with more persistent problems require more. A management plan and treatment approach will be discussed with you at the time of consultation.
It is likely that we will give you ‘homework’, which may include: stretching techniques, exercise advice, the use of heat or ice and referral advice.
- If you are having your initial consultation, we encourage you to bring your X-Rays, scans and results with you.
- You don’t need a referral. You can simply contact us on 9305 7035 to arrange an appointment.