Is there more to good health than just the absence of pain or disease? Doctors of Osteopath Medicine think so.
In this article, we’ll take a closer look at Osteopathy. What it is and whether it may be a good fit for you.
What is Osteopath Medicine?
Osteopathy is a branch of medicine that looks at patients as complex, whole people rather than a set of symptoms to be treated.
Founded on the idea that all body systems are interrelated, DOs pay close attention to how everything works together to avoid disease. Including your lifestyle, communities you are part of, and your family life.
DOs can write prescriptions and perform surgeries just like MDs. But they differ in their approach to treatment.
Beyond surgeries and pharmaceuticals, DOs are trained in Osteopathic Manipulative Treatment, also called Osteopathic Musculoskeletal Manipulation. This hands-on tool works directly with the musculoskeletal system to help treat and prevent disease or illness.
Is Osteopathy Just Newfangled Medicine?
Not at all.
Osteopathy was first developed in the 1800s by Dr.Andrew Still. He didn’t think treatments of the time, like bloodletting and mercury dosing, were working. This was a pretty radical perspective at the time but Still was determined.
He developed a brand new system of medicine. One that favored preventative treatments and looked at people more holistically. With special emphasis on the body’s ability to heal itself when given the right tools.
Is Osteopath Medicine a Good Fit for Me?
This is a really personal question. The answer will depend on your preferences, health conditions, and goals.
DOs have all the same basic training as MDs, with the addition of musculoskeletal manipulations. So they can offer you a comparable level of the care you may be accustomed to.
An Osteopath treatment will most likely look and feel similar to a visit to an MD. Whether your issue is allergies, hormonal changes, acute pain, or a vaccination, DOs can do it.
They will want to get to know you. To understand who you are, what you do in the world, to determine how your conditions are connected. If you are going in for neck pain it’s likely much more than your neck will be addressed.
One key difference between MDs and DOs is Osteopathic Manipulative Treatment, OMT, or Osteopathic Musculoskeletal Manipulation, OMM. Using specialized techniques the DO may do some hands-on adjustments or make structural assessments. These techniques are designed to check for restrictions and increase your range of motion capacities.
If you are interested in non-invasive practices and a more holistic approach to medicine, osteopathy treatment may be for you.
In the UK there are quite a few places to obtain high-quality Osteopathy treatments. Click here to learn more.
Is the Doctor in?
The field of Osteopath Medicine has grown in leaps and bounds in recent years.
There are nearly 121,000 fully licensed active osteopathic physicians in practice. Meaning no matter where you live, it should be pretty easy to find one that is a good fit for you.
Many DOs accept insurance and can help you plot a course to a healthier you. By combining traditional treatments with a holistic approach a good DO may save you time, and money while helping you feel your best.