Osteopathy4all | FAQs
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Here are some questions we’ve been asked in the past:
WHO CAN OSTEOPATHS HELP?

Osteopaths’ patients include the young, older people, manual workers, office professionals, pregnant women, and children and also sports people.

HOW CAN I BE SURE I AM IN SAFE HANDS?

Jason has an honours degree in osteopathy, and has also demonstrated to the General Osteopathic Council (the osteopathic governing body) via a detailed application process that he is a safe and competent practitioner. Jason also has comprehensive insurance and has agreed to abide by a Code of Practice akin to the Hippocratic oath.

WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN AN OSTEOPATH AND A CHIROPRACTOR?

The types of conditions that osteopaths and chiropractors treat are very similar. The main difference seems to be that Osteopaths diagnose patients to have functional lesions; stiffness and immobility of joints, muscular spasm surrounding the joints causing pain, postural changes and irregular movements, whereas Chiropractors tend to focus on positional lesions of the vertebrae i.e., bones out of place. Therefore you tend to find that Chiropractors use mainly manipulation during treatment whereas Osteopaths also combine soft tissue and articulation of joints as well as manipulation.

WHAT SHOULD I WEAR WHEN I COME FOR TREATMENT?

You may be asked to undress down to your underwear depending on the area of your symptoms. Patients are welcome to wear shorts if they feel more comfortable.

DO I NEED REFERRAL FROM MY GP?

Most patients ‘self refer’ to an osteopath for treatment. Although referral by a GP is not necessary, patients are encouraged to keep both their GP and osteopath fully informed, so that their medical records are current and complete and the patient receives the best possible care from both healthcare practitioners. Osteopaths are skilled in diagnostic techniques and trained to identify when a patient needs to be referred to a GP.

WILL MY HEALTH INSURANCE COMPANY PAY?

We are approved to work with all major insurance companies including BUPA, AXA PPP, HSA, Aviva, Cigna, WPA, Friends Provident, and Standard Life. It may be possible to work with other Insurance Companies, please telephone your insurance provider to confirm this.
Prior to commencing treatment, you must provide your osteopath with details of your healthcare policy, so please remember to state this at the time of booking.
Please be aware that you may be liable for treatment costs where we are not notified in advance.

WHAT IS HAPPENING IF AN OSTEOPATH MAKES MY BACK CLICK?

When an osteopath manipulates your back you will hear a click. The click is due to the surfaces of the joint coming apart creating a potential vacuum. The aim of this is to separate the joint surfaces, which leads to increased movement between the bones that make up the joint, and causes the muscles surrounding the joint to relax and at the same time releases a little pocket of gas that is found within the joint which can produce a clicking sound. You may feel a little twisted and stretched as the Osteopath prepares you for manipulation but it does not cause pain.

WHAT IS THE BEST POSITION TO SLEEP IN?

Lying on your side with your knees slightly bent tends to be the best position to sleep in for most conditions, however it is important to make sure that the neck is well supported by having a correct pillow height. The head should remain in a straight line to the rest of your spine however lying on your side may irritate existing shoulder problems, in which case lying on your back may be more appropriate. Hip and pelvic problems may be strained when lying on your side, and many patients find it helps to place a pillow between the thighs as this reduces torsion through the pelvis. Sleeping on your front is generally not good as it causes your head to be rotated, so causing strain to the joints in your neck and if you also use a pillow, your neck will be rotated (bent backwards) which can aggravate neck problems. Lying on your stomach may also lead to lower back sagging-so increasingly concave bend (the lordosis), which can also result in low backache.

DO I NEED TO EXERCISE AND IF SO HOW OFTEN SHOULD I DO IT?

Specific exercises may be given to you by your osteopath and should be carried out at least once a day but ideally morning and evening. If you have very acute pain exercises should be carried out regularly through the day. Everyone should do some form of exercise at least three times per week, swimming is appropriate as it tends to be gentle on your joints reducing the effects of gravity, whilst strengthening heart and lung function. Walking also helps to maintain joint mobility and strengthen postural muscles. It is important to do some form of weight bearing exercise to maintain good bone density. At Osteopathy4All, Jason is very keen to give exercises to improve your posture, strength and your back muscles and maintain suppleness of the body as and when needed.

WHAT IS A SLIPPED DISC?

The joints at the bottom of your spine or your neck are most often affected. In between the bony vertebra are discs, which are mainly made of fibrocartilage. There is an inner part called the nucleus pulposus, which is more jelly like in consistency and an outer part called the annulus fibrosus, which is the strong fibrocartilage to protect the inner nucleus pulposus. The purpose of the disc is to space the vertebrae apart whilst attaching them together If there is some weakness in the outer annulus fibrosus, some of the gelatinous nucleus pulposus can protrude, this causes a bulging on the outside of the disc, which can then press on nerves exiting the spinal cord at that level. There are different degrees of severity ranging from a small protrusion to a severe prolapse when the nucleus pulposus pushes all through the annulus fibrosus. Naturally the disc will heal through shrinkage and breakdown of the extruded disc material. However in severe cases surgery may be required to fuse the joints at the base of the spine.

WHAT CAN CAUSE SCIATICA?

There are many causes of sciatica. The term sciatica describes irritation of the sciatic nerve and this may occur any where along the course of the sciatic nerve. The sciatic nerve originates from the sacral plexus. The sciatic nerve may be trapped by a lumbar disc prolapse causing compression at the nerve root, or it may be compressed more peripherally by the piriformis, a muscle that lies deep in the buttock. It may occur after prolonged squatting, immobility, or fractures or dislocation of the hip joint. Osteopathic treatment involves identifying the cause and trying to release the pressure on the nerve by improving range of motion, relaxing soft tissues and taking the strain off the structures involved.