If I could have £1 for every time I was asked just one question it would be “what is the difference between osteopaths & chiropractors?”
My answer has varied over the years but currently it is this…
Originally we were one & the same but at some point there was a branch out from osteopathy & they called themselves chiropractors. One of osteopathy’s main principals is ‘the rule of the artery is supreme’, I heard a few years ago that the chiropractor’s version is ‘the rule of the nerve is supreme’. So that’s why traditional chiropractors manipulate a lot, to address the nerves exiting the spine, and osteopaths tend to focus on a lot on articulating.
It got me thinking, well they’re both pretty important, kind of like the chicken & the egg scenario. I guess how I work is somewhere in the middle, but then also completely different. I’m often told “this is not what I was expecting!” I look at the body as a number of levers & pulleys. If a joint is out of place I will look to see what’s pulling it out of position but not forgetting that it is attached to the whole body.
So yes, it is a holistic treatment. There you go, I said it. But as annoying as it is to hear the word ‘holistic’ being constantly thrown around by us “alternative” therapists, it is important to remember that whichever body part you have pain in isn’t detached from your body and sitting in the room next door. It is a part of you, not apart from you. When you injure yourself your body adapts, pain goes away, injury, adaption, pain goes and so on. Sometimes you throw in some painkillers and that allows you to have a few more rounds until you get to the point where your body takes a lot longer to adapt.
This is when the pain won’t go away so easily. Eventually it might go but it’ll take longer the next time. That adaption would’ve cost you a lot of energy so you may be feeling more fatigued.The road to being pain free won’t be me in the driving seat, I’ll just be there as your co-driver – showing you the way to go & nagging at you when you take a wrong turn, also when you don’t do your exercises, I give them for good reason and not to annoy you. Honest!
I digress. What was the question? Ah, yes! How does osteopathy work? I look at a body and ask “is it aligned?” The answer is “no”, it never is, if it was then there’d be no problem, you wouldn’t be coming to see me & I’d have found a modern miracle.
The next bit involves 8 years of training, an OCD for perfection & knowledge of how joints, ligaments, muscles etc work together. If it was easy then everyone could do it, but it isn’t, so that’s what you pay me for.