low back pain and sciatica

Structural osteopathy is the better know facet of osteopathic medicine. Quite often the term is wrongly used to define osteopathy itself. Structural osteopathy describes the diagnosis and treatment of dysfunctions in the musculoskeletal system, in the same way visceral osteopathy relates to the visceral system. Restrictions within the musculoskeletal system can find their origins in diverse structures and tissues; they can take form in dysfunction of bones and joints, muscle tension and fibrosis, fascial adhesions, etc.

Based on specific principles, structural osteopathy recognizes the importance of the interdependence between the body structure and its function. A dysfunction of a joint or tissue, generally characterized by a decrease in mobility and tightness, will affect the biomechanics and overall function of that area.structural osteopathy Folkestone As a result more strain will be put on the surrounding structures which have to compensate. With time and chronicity, the increased stress resulting from the change in function will progressively cause a restriction of the compensating structure. Similar to falling dominos the process starts again with compensations arising in another area.

As long as the body has the ability to compensate for the many restrictions in the musculoskeletal system, little or occasional discomfort will be felt. However if left untreated, chronic compensation patterns will often result in more serious injuries and inflammation of the musculoskeletal system. In the spine, the most common sites affected by acute dysfunctions and injuries are the neck and low back area. Similarly bigger joints such as hips and knees can get inflamed from the added strain resulting from compensation patterns. The more chronic patterns will often result in the early wear and tear and degeneration of the joint.

The role of the osteopath is not only to diagnose and treat the local dysfunction of the structure causing pain, but to investigate for any compensation chains in the musculoskeletal system resulting from previous traumas and injuries. Once the cause of the dysfunction and compensation is treated and normal biomechanics restored, the body is given the ability to heal itself.

During a structural osteopathic treatment, a wide range of direct techniques such as spinal adjustments, joint articulation and deep soft tissue massages may be utilized by the osteopath in order to release tensions in the musculoskeletal system and restore the body’s biomechanics. Similarly other more gentle techniques, commonly described as indirect techniques, will be used to treat structures for which the practitioner feels are more appropriate, such as with patients suffering with osteoporosis and other chronic conditions. The osteopath will never base his treatment approach on his preferences but will take into account the patient’s medical history and assess what approach the body needs.

Neck pain and headaches