difference between an osteopath, a chiropractor and a
What are the
clicking sounds you get with an osteopathic adjustment?
Are there side
effects with treatment?
How do I know if
you are properly qualified?
Is my osteopath
Iím pregnant - Can I still have
What should I
wear when I see an osteopath?
We are all considered to be Ďmusculo-skeletal expertsí and so
there are many similarities between us, however all practitioners
do develop their own styles and techniques so treatments even amongst the same profession can differ.
In general though most
chiropractors tend to treat the spine only, using HVLA techniques.
They also routinely use x-rays for diagnostic purposes. Typically
patients may require a long course of regular treatment. Physio's
on the other hand tend to prescribe rehabilitative exercises
routinely. Most NHS physios do very little 'hands on' techniques,
however, some private physios will do more 'hands on' work. There
may also be a long wait for physio on the NHS by which time acute
conditions may have become chronic.
Osteopaths treat the
whole person and take other areas of the body into consideration
rather than just the area in pain. We look for the underlying
cause of the problem rather than just applying a 'band aid'. We
diagnose with our case history notes, clinical examination and
palpation. We treat with 'hands on' techniques, exercise
prescription and postural rehabilitation.
"adjustment" is a procedure employed by osteopaths to
restore proper movement patterns to a joint and reduce any
irritation of the nerve structures around the joint.
These techniques are
called high velocity low amplitude thrusts (HVLATs) and often
cause a cracking noise to be heard in the joints. This noise is a
release of gas into the synovial fluid inside the joint. As the
joint is gapped by the osteopath, the pressure decreases inside
the joint and the dissolved gas is released. This technique frees
off the joints very quickly as muscles holding the joint
restriction in place let go. Although it is a painless procedure,
it is common to experience some muscle soreness for 24-48 hours
after an adjustment.
Side effects are
generally rare, however some techniques may cause some discomfort
during treatment and you may experience some tiredness and
soreness for a few days afterwards. This is a normal and healthy
response to the treatment and is often due to the fact your
muscles may have been tense for a while and the treatment which
stretches and rekaxes them causes a little soreness and stiffness.
Most patients report feeling looser and more comfortable directly
after treatment, however it is a good idea to take it easy after
treatment to allow the body to readjust.
All osteopaths in the
are required by law (The Osteopaths Act, 1993) to be registered
with the General Osteopathic Council and it is an offence for
anyone to call themselves an osteopath if they are not registered.
They are our governing body and are there to uphold the standards
of the profession and ensure the levels of excellence in our
training and post-graduate education.
It takes 4 to 5 years
study at university to obtain the necessary qualifications to
become a registered osteopath. The degree course content is
similar to a medical degree and focuses on anatomy, physiology,
musculoskeletal medicine and practical clinic skills. To qualify
students must undergo more than 1,000 hours in the university
clinics transferring the written knowledge into practical skills.
Paolo Iorio osteopath
is registered both at the General Osteopathic Council and at the
British Osteopathic Association.
The GOsC hold a
register of all registered osteopaths and this can be viewed at
It is absolutely fine
to have osteopathic treatment when you are pregnant. During
pregnancy your body has to cope with a large amount of anatomical
and physiological changes and these can place great physical
strain on the organs, tissues, joints and ligaments. when your
ligaments soften to help accommodate the baby. The pregnant body
has to adapt to all these changes and find new ways to walk, sit
and sleep and this can result in new aches and pains arising,
additionally lots of women find that old injuries start to niggle
when pregnant can ease some of the symptoms typically associated
with pregnancy, such as back, neck and shoulder pain, muscular
tension, nausea and vomiting, heartburn and sciatica. In addition
Osteopaths can provide advice on breathing techniques and
exercises which will help you maintain your wellbeing throughout
your pregnancy and can help prepare the way for a more trouble
free childbirth by improving flexibility in the pelvis and
require patients to undress to their underwear so that the
patientís whole body can be examined to enable the most accurate
diagnosis and permit the most effective treatment. Many patients find it more comfortable to wear shorts and a
vest or similar which allows for good treatment and retains