An American from Missouri, Doctor Andrew Taylor Still founded osteopathy over 130 years ago on the basis that the body has the innate ability to heal itself. He emphasized unobstructed movement in all fluids, tissues and joints. Dr. Still felt that in both health and sickness the neuro-muscular skeletal system interacts with the rest of the body including the organs.
When part of the structure is altered through for example, physical trauma, occupational strain or stress or emotional trauma, a chain reaction may take place which is often mediated through the communication networks of the body; the blood supply, nervous or hormonal systems, and can lead to abnormalities in other parts of the body causing a process of "dis-ease".
The body is attempting to resolve these problems of disturbed function itself and in the majority of cases it is successful, it is after all a wonderful design.
But on some occasions it may need the presence of an external reference point or a catalyst to optimise the potential of its own self-healing mechanisms to resolve the part, which is out of harmony with the whole.
The techniques an Osteopath uses to restore harmony to the body range from subtle palpation, where the practitioner just seems to be holding a particular part of the body, to gentle rhythmic movement, to a very specific, focused, more assertive manipulation as appropriate.
Our philosophy is to do only what is necessary to overcome the barrier to health and let the body`s own inherent wisdom get on with the work.
Osteopathy is a system of complementary medicine that takes into account the whole individual. In order to understand as much as possible about the patient in relation to his environment it is important to take a comprehensive case history detailing not just the current complaint, but also any previous problems or injuries including a full medical history. Appropriate tests; X-rays, blood tests etc. are used where necessary.
The sense of touch (palpation) developed during years of training, allows the gathering of important diagnostic information. This permits the Osteopath to make a skilled minimal intervention through the body`s neuro-muscular skeletal system, which has a profound affect on the total body economy.
Unless you are in severe pain your Osteopath will rarely see you more than once a week. This allows your body time to respond to the treatment given and optimises the treatment process, meaning less treatment in the long run. It also allows the best attention to the underlying cause of the current symptoms in an attempt to reduce or eliminate the possibilities of reoccurrence.
What is Cranial Osteopathy?
Cranial Osteopathy is a refined and subtle type of osteopathic treatment that uses very gentle manipulative pressure to encourage the release of stresses throughout the body, including the head.
It is extremely effective in treating a wide range of conditions in people of all ages, from birth to old age.
Why is Cranial Osteopathy different?
Osteopaths are taught a variety of methods and techniques, ranging from the well known “high velocity thrust” with its dramatic clicks, to the very gently applied methods used by so called “cranial osteopaths”.
Osteopaths vary their treatment methods depending on their own preference and individual patients’ problems.
“Cranial Osteopath” is the name by which osteopaths who work at the more gentle, subtle end of the spectrum of different treatment approaches have become known.
Osteopaths may have different specialities including sports injuries, paediatrics, visceral (treating the internal organs of the body). Cranial Osteopathy embraces all of these.
“Involuntary Motion” in the body
Cranial Osteopaths are trained to feel a very subtle, rhythmical shape change that is present in all body tissues. This is called involuntary motion.
The skull is made up of 26 bones that are intricately joined in such a way that during the rhythmical cycle of involuntary motion, the skull can actually change shape very slightly to accommodate the normal involuntary motion of the brain inside.
Impacts to the head can block or disrupt this movement. This can cause a very wide variety of problems both in the head and elsewhere in the body.
Using involuntary motion in the tissues, osteopaths can feel whether a person is working in the best way and they are in an optimum state of health, or whether there is something preventing healthy movement of the tissues from occurring.