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What is Osteopathy?
Osteopathy is a form of manual medicine based on the philosophy and method of medical practice first proposed by Dr. Andrew Taylor Still in 1874. It is a form of therapy that treats the body as a self-regulating whole or interconnected unit, based on an in-depth understanding of the direct relationship between the structure (anatomy) of the body and the function (physiology) of the body. This knowledge is applied to all diseases, disorders and dysfunctions in order to find and address the root cause of the issue. Diagnosis is based on the assessment of the position, mobility and vitality of each component part. Osteopathy recognizes the body's natural ability to heal itself. The practitioner's role is to facilitate the removal of blocks and interferences to unlock the body's natural capacity for self correction.
Unique benefits in the treatment of:
• Chronic Pain and Tension
• Whiplash or Falls
• Impact and Sports Injuries
• Joint and Ligament Injuries
• Frozen Shoulder
• Traumatic Brain Injuries
• Scar Tissue
• Emotional and Stress-related Issues
• Migraines and Headaches
• Post Partum Conditions
• Birth Trauma
• Delayed Fine or Gross Motor Skills
• Respiratory Issues
• Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity
• Poor Sleep Patterns
• Digestive Difficulties and Colic
Philosophy of Osteopathy
The Philosophy of Osteopathy is based on four basic principles. Click on the items below to learn more.
Each structure in the body supports it's function. Optimally, each body part should move freely around it's own internal physiological axis. Any disruption to structure can result in functional changes. The body is like a beautifully complicated time piece, each part in subtle but perpetual motion relative to the others. When one component cannot move in harmony with it's neighbors due to abnormal tone, adhesions or displacements, it works against the body's other organs, muscles, membranes, fascia and osseous structures. This disharmony creates fixed abnormal points of tension that the body is forced to move around. When the body's equilibrium is exhausted by injury, stress or disease, multiple symptoms and pathologies can occur.
When the body has no restrictions it has the inherent ability to heal itself. Health exists when the body can maintain a state of rhythmic balance. A flexible, and mobile body can easily accommodate for the various stresses of daily living. Body tissues are naturally able to reform and shift to accommodate for significant areas of tension, maintaining an equilibrium.
The natural flow of the body's fluids; lymphatic, vascular and neurological must be preserved and maintained to support life. In fact, it is a primary mandate of the body to maintain the flow of nutrients toward and toxic waste away from all body structures. There is an inherent heirarchy to the various body systems and the preservation of the integrity of the fluid systems is primary.
The body is an integrated whole. All body tissues and organs are in constant motion and are interconnected via the fascia. The fascia, or connective tissue is a fine web or sheath that extends over and within every organ, muscle, vascular, neural and osseous structure – linking these systems and components together to form one functional unit. Compromise in one component of the system affects the entire being. The human body is the sum of its parts, to include physical, emotional, social, spiritual and cognitive systems. These do not work independently – they work in harmony.
Methodology and Techniques
The therapist's hands are their most valuable diagnostic tool. Examination and treatment are done by gentle palpation. Using perceptive fingers, areas of swelling, tenderness, tension, thermal differences and quality of mobility are evaluated. The therapist releases restrictions by locating tensions, following the tissue into specific positions and engaging internal rhythms and forces while continuing to follow the tissue through a series of movements. Treatment may include: Osteo-articular adjustment, visceral normalization, Cranial-sacral therapy, muscle energy and fascial release.