Osteopathic Physicians, also known as DOs, work in partnership with their patients and colleagues in holistic way. Osteopathic medicine provides all of the benefits of modern medicine including prescription drugs, surgery, and the use of technology to diagnostically evaluate and treat disease. What we also appreciate here at Prestige Health & Wellness is that the Osteopathic method also offers the added benefit of hands-on diagnosis and treatment through a system of therapy known as osteopathic manipulative medicine. Osteopathic medicine emphasizes helping each person achieve the highest level of physical, mental and spiritual wellness by focusing on health promotion, disease prevention and understanding your own body.
Conditions we Treat
Arthritis is a common condition which causes pain, swelling and inflammation and often stiffness in the joints of the body.
The two most common types of arthritis are osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis but there are many other types including ankylosing spondylitis, gout, psoriatic arthritis and reactive arthritis. Certain types of arthritis can also affect children.
Osteoarthritis is a result of wear and tear of the joints in the body. It is common in people over 50 and most commonly affects the joints of the knees, hips, neck and back, base of the toes and hands.
How can osteopaths help?
The gentle manipulative and massage techniques from osteopaths can help some arthritis sufferers. Treatment is individual, gently moving and stretching an arthritic joint and massaging surrounding muscles and tissues can help ease some of the discomfort. Sometimes an osteopath may work on general mobility of the other joints and muscles in the body to help the mechanics of the body work better. Osteopaths may also give advice on exercises, diet, posture and changes to lifestyle. X-rays, scans or other tests may be required and your osteopath may refer you to your GP for any additional investigations and treatment
Back pain is a very common problem, with reports suggesting as many as eight out of ten of us will suffer from it at some point during our lives (1). Around 5.6 million working days in the UK are lost each year due to back pain, second only to stress (2, 3).
Back pain can affect anyone at any age, and can often be the result of a sprain or a strain of the structures of the back such as the muscles, ligaments, joints or damage to the discs. Osteoarthritis or wear and tear in the back can also be a reason.
Most of us know that back pain can be painful and inconvenient, but it’s not usually serious and will often resolve on its own within a few weeks. However, many people seek osteopathic treatment to address it quickly(4) and at a time and place of their own choice; and osteopaths are skilled at helping prevent back pain from becoming a chronic, long-term condition.
- Palmer KT, Walsh K, et al. Back pain in Britain: comparison of two prevalence surveys at an interval of 10 years BMJ 2000;320:1577-1578
- Gurry et al. (2004) looked at a multidisciplinary setting within Plymouth Primary Care Trust (PCT)46. It found that the return to work time was quicker using this service which included osteopaths than GP and physiotherapy services alone.
Diagram of the anatomy of the back:
Back pain can be brought on by lifting, moving awkwardly or by an accident. Sometimes it can come on without any specific injury to your back. Stress, depression, posture, being overweight, sedentary living and poor lifestyle habits can all be significant factors.
People can feel a range of symptoms such as stiffness, tenderness and mild to very severe pain. The pain can come on quite suddenly or over time, and be located anywhere in the spine from the top of the neck to the pelvis. Sometimes pressure from the back on the nerves can cause pain or pins and needles and numbness in the legs and arms. X-rays, scans and other tests are sometimes required to make a diagnosis. If osteopathy treatment cannot completely heal or discover the cause of the back pain, your osteopath may refer to your GP or a specialist for any additional investigation.
How can an Osteopath help?
- Osteopaths are well known for treating back pain and patients report high satisfaction with treatment. There is good quality evidence supporting the beneficial effects of manipulation for back pain and the National Institutes for Clinical Excellence recommends osteopathy for sub-acute and chronic low back pain
- Osteopaths can use a wide range of gentle manual treatments depending on your age, fitness and diagnosis. We may gently massage the soft tissues of your back or rhythmically “rock” the joints to release tension and sometimes we may gently manipulate the back to loosen the joints and you may hear a “click”
- Treatment is different in every individual and sometimes it might involve treating other areas in the body such as the hips or neck
- We may offer advice on your lifestyle particularly if we feel something you are doing repetitively is part of the reason why you have back pain. We may offer advice on your posture and give advice on diet and exercise or give you specific exercises.
Some of the back conditions patients visit osteopaths for:
Acute back pain
Chronic back pain
Some Disc problems
Mechanical back pain
Links to websites…
Headaches (Tension and Migraine)
Second only to back pain, headaches are one of the most common conditions regularly managed by chiropractors. At the time I conducted this research, over 230 peer-reviewed articles referenced chiropractic’s ability to help cure, prevent and ease the burden of headaches and migraines in people all across the globe!
A group trial found that 22 percent of people who had chiropractic treatment saw the number of attacks drop by 90 percent. In that same study, 49 percent said they had a significant reduction in pain intensity.
Compared to most medical treatments, few interventions can initiate headache relief like chiropractic adjustments can.
Colic and Ear Infections
A 2012 study published in Journal of Manipulative Physiological Therapeutics found that chiropractic adjustments greatly reduced colic symptoms.
Although very few randomized control trials have been conducted describing the clinical effects of chiropractic care on children, literally scores of case studies have been documented that describe how children suffering from otitis media(ear infections), acid reflux and colic have experienced complete to near complete resolution after just a few visits.
The reasons for this vary, but one common theme is that nerves controlling the gut and brain are intricately connected to each other and are quite sensitive to neurological insult caused by vertebral subluxations.
Exciting research is currently being conducted via upright MRI showing how upper cervical adjustments affect various brain-based conditions. What we have seen so far is quite remarkable.
Not only are MRI scans revealing that cerebral spinal fluid and blood flow are markedly increased after a chiropractic adjustment, researchers are observing that cerebellar invagination (when the cerebellum drops down below the skull line) is being reversed and brain plaquing (common in multiple sclerosis patients) is disappearing!
Montel Williams, the famous TV host, was interviewed about his experience as a MS patient under chiropractic care. Check it out here to see how it changed his life!
In 2007, George Bakris, the world expert on hypertension, published a study with a team of researchers in the Human Journal of Hypertension proving that one upper cervical chiropractic adjustment had the same effect as two blood pressure-lowering drugs. Even more fascinating, the effects of just one adjustment lasted more than six months!
Compared to the placebo-treated patients, those who got the real procedure saw an average 14 mm Hg greater drop in systolic blood pressure (the top number in a blood pressure count) and an average 8 mm Hg greater drop in diastolic blood pressure (the bottom blood pressure number).
Other studies have shown similar findings with hypotensive patients, and their low blood pressure was raised to normal levels after chiropractic care. This is exciting because it highlights the body’s ability to create a homeostatic balanced environment once vertebral subluxations are removed.
Chiropractic has long been heralded by natural health care providers as a natural method to prevent back surgery.
In fact, the Journal of the American Medical Association just recently published its low back pain guidelines and suggested that people suffering from back pain first try chiropractic before resorting to surgery.
Last year a clinical trial was published describing how patients suffering from the debilitating condition frozen shoulder responded to chiropractic care.
Of the 50 patients: 16 resolved completely; 25 showed 75 percent to 90 percent improvement; eight showed 50 percent to 75 percent improvement; and one showed 0 percent to 50 percent improvement.
Chiropractic adjustments for scoliosis coupled with muscular rehabilitation techniques may help prevent the progression of scoliosis. Organizations like the nonprofit Clear Institute founded by Dr. Dennis Woggon have set out to empower healthcare professionals with an effective chiropractic system to treat people with scoliosis.
They’ve perfected a model and discovered that it is possible to effectively treat the condition without the use of restrictive braces or dangerous surgeries. In many case studies, participants have seen a 10 percent to 30 percent decrease in their scoliosis curvatures. You can read about some of the cases here.
If you or a family member suffer from scoliosis, our team of doctors are here to help you!
There is a reason why athletes both today and in the past, like Michael Phelps, Jerry Rice and Joe Montana, are under regular chiropractic care. In fact, over 50 percent of NFL teams have a chiropractor on staff.
Because it is so effective at pain-based and pathological conditions, one of the most overlooked aspects of chiropractic care is that it enhances personal and athletic performance. Studies have sown that it:
- Reduces inflammatory cytokines
- Boosts your immune system
- Enhances pulmonary function
- Decreases mental and oxidative stress
- Relieves muscle tension
- And can naturally increase your energy level
Studies have even proved, objectively and subjectively, that chiropractic patients experience “overall increased bodily function,” which includes bowl regularity and mental clarity.
Basically, because it helps place your body in the position where it can heal itself, chiropractic adjustments can free your immune system up to focus on keeping you healthy, which enhances your ability to think, move and perform.