The Long-Term Benefits of Regular Osteopath Visits
As osteopaths we are often asked how often a patient should come in for treatment and what are the benefits of regular osteo visits. The answer to this question varies depending on the person and the problem they present with.
It goes without saying that it is a good idea for people to visit their doctors or health care providers regularly. Just like we service our cars, we should also service our bodies. Without maintaining our muscles and joints in good condition, our bodies can break down and our quality of life can quickly decline.
It becomes even more important to see a health professional when there is a history of illness or injury. People who have chronic conditions are often recommended to visit the doctor more often than they normally would, in order to benefit their long-term health. The question becomes a matter of which doctors or health care professionals you should visit, what they can do for you, and why regular visits can be beneficial for you.
A good example of this is visiting an Osteopath regularly. As the term ‘Osteo’ might suggest, Osteopaths work with the body’s structure, including the muscles and bones. If you aren’t quite sure of what an osteopath does, you might find yourself wondering why should I visit my osteopath regularly. To answer this question, it is important to know what we do.
What Do Osteopaths Do?
Osteopaths use our hands to work on the musculoskeletal system to improve functional mobility. Your Osteopath will:
listen to your complaint
take down a detailed case history in order to diagnose your problem
perform some assessments which may include watching you move in different directions in order to identify restrictions in your body
The treatment, procedures and techniques Osteopaths choose will vary depending on your age, your medical history and the problem that you present with. Your Osteopath may refer you for an x-ray or to a specialist if required. Osteopaths can focus on different areas of the body depending on what your needs are at the time. But Osteopath’s will always try and work on the body as a complete unit.
If you are experiencing chronic pain, pain related to an injury that didn’t heal properly, or wanting a musculoskeletal check-ups to determine how you are moving overall, an Osteopath can assist.
Osteopaths will provide care that is considered and appropriate for your condition. We can also liaise with your GP or specialist to ensure you are getting the benefit of a team care approach.
Osteopaths specialise in manual medicine
Osteopathy is known as “manual medicine.” This simply refers to the fact that both diagnosis and treatment are carried out by your Osteopath’s hands. We use our hands to assess and treat your body.
Osteopaths focus heavily on the joints, muscles, and spine. We may also ask you about your sleep, lifestyle habits and other bodily systems. Your answers to these questions alerts your osteopath to use techniques that have a positive impact on the nervous system, the circulatory system, and the lymphatic system It will also tell us when to refer you for appropriate management with your GP or other health care providers.
Osteopaths provide relief to the musculoskeletal system by addressing restriction in joints and improving poor biomechanics in the body by using our hands to help correct this. We then give you a management plan that may include positive lifestyle changes, exercise rehabilitation and prescription, ergonomic advice and postural correction.
How Can Visiting An Osteopath Benefit You?
Whether you have chronic pain or a recent injury, visiting an Osteopath is something that can benefit you in the long run. With our knowledge and extensive training in the field of manual musculoskeletal medicine, we will be able to determine what pain management methods will work for you. In addition to this, we will work on the betterment of your overall health and well being to help reduce the frequency and severity of pain.
Even if you are not experiencing chronic pain or pain related to past injuries, an Osteopath can help you prevent those smaller niggles turning into something that is a bigger concern. Osteopathy can address both acute and chronic pain and can also work as a preventative measure. Your Osteopath will always do what they can to educate you so that you can manage your own body. We may also provide maintenance treatment to keep you travelling along a pain free path. An osteopath will do their best to let you know before pain does, whether your body is heading into trouble!
Osteopaths can help you manage:
headaches and migraines
sports injuries including strains and sprains and their rehabilitation
repetitive strain injuries such as tennis elbow
PMS and the effects of hormonal imbalances
pregnancy related back or pelvic pain and pelvic instability
Osteopathy and Medicare
Your GP can refer you for Osteopathic treatment if you:
– are experiencing a chronic injury or
– you require complex care by more than one health professional
Examples of this may be a combination of Diabetes and Arthritis, or Asthma and Back Pain.
If you are an older adult or have complex care needs, you can discuss with your GP if you qualify for the Chronic Disease Management plan. This is where a large percentage of your osteopathic treatment costs are paid by Medicare.