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Osteopathy is a holistic healthcare approach that has been growing in popularity in recent years. However, despite its increasing popularity, there are still many misconceptions about osteopathy and what it can do. In this article, we will address five common misconceptions about osteopathy in Narre Warren and set the record straight.
Misconception 1: Osteopathy is Only for Back Pain
One of the most common misconceptions about osteopathy is that it is only effective for treating back pain. While it is true that osteopathy is an effective treatment for back pain, it can also be used to treat a wide range of conditions, such as headaches, joint pain, and digestive issues.
Osteopathy is a holistic approach that focuses on the body as a whole, rather than just treating the symptoms of a specific condition. Osteopaths work to identify and treat the underlying causes of a condition, which can help to alleviate symptoms and promote overall health and wellbeing.
Misconception 2: Osteopathy is Not Evidence-Based
Another common misconception about osteopathy is that it is not evidence-based. However, this could not be further from the truth. Osteopathy is a regulated healthcare profession that requires rigorous training and ongoing professional development.
There is a growing body of scientific evidence that supports the effectiveness of osteopathy for a wide range of conditions, including musculoskeletal pain, headaches, and asthma. Osteopathy is also recommended by many national health organisations, such as the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) in the UK.
Misconception 3: Osteopathy is Just a Form of Massage
While osteopathy does involve manual techniques, such as massage, it is not just a form of massage. Osteopaths use a range of techniques, including soft tissue manipulation, joint mobilisation, dry needling, cupping, sports taping and stretching, to address the underlying causes of a condition.
Often, your osteopath will work on the body as a whole rather than just your area of complaint. This is because of the overarching philopsophy of osteopathy that your body is a system of system that functions as a whole, rather than individual isolated pieces. For example, if you make an appointment with us about your knee pain. Sure, we'll look at the knee, but we'll also look and see what's happening at the ankle and hip too. This is because a lack of joint flexibility at either hip or ankle may manifest as knee compensation, which may result in painful symptoms.
Misconception 4: Osteopathy is Expensive
Another common misconception about osteopathy is that it is expensive. While the cost of osteopathy varies depending on the practitioner and location, it is generally no more expensive than other forms of healthcare.
In fact, many people find that osteopathy is a cost-effective alternative to other forms of healthcare, such as medications or surgery. Osteopathy is also covered by many health insurance plans, making it more accessible and affordable for many people.
Misconception 5: Osteopathy is Painful
Some people may be hesitant to try osteopathy because they think it will be painful. While it is true that some techniques may cause mild discomfort, osteopathy should not be painful.
Osteopaths are trained to use gentle, non-invasive techniques that are designed to be as comfortable as possible. Your osteopath will work with you to ensure that you are comfortable throughout your treatment, and will adjust their techniques as necessary.
During your osteopathic appointment, all treatment techniques are thoroughly explained, outlining all potential risks and benefits of each proposed technqiue to be used during the treatment. You are also given the oppurtunity to either accept or decline any form of treatment. For example, a common scenario we see in the clinic is when a patient declines neck joint manipulation. It is perfectly reasonable and we can always utalise alternative techniques to achieve the same or similar result.
Here are some other frequently asked questions new patients ask us before visiting the clinic.
1. Is osteopathy only for treating musculoskeletal conditions?
No, osteopathy can be used to treat a wide range of conditions, including musculoskeletal pain, headaches, digestive issues, and more. Osteopaths take a holistic approach to healthcare, focusing on the whole person rather than just treating the symptoms of a specific condition.
2. Is osteopathy covered by health insurance?
Yes, osteopathy is covered by many health insurance plans. However, coverage may vary depending on your specific plan and provider. It is always best to check with your health insurance provider to determine what is covered.
3. Is osteopathy safe?
Yes, osteopathy is generally considered to be a safe form of healthcare. Osteopaths are trained to use gentle, non-invasive techniques that are designed to be as comfortable as possible. However, as with any form of healthcare, there may be some risks involved. Your osteopath will discuss any potential risks with you before beginning your treatment.
4. How many osteopathy treatments will I need?
The number of osteopathy treatments you will need depends on your specific condition and individual needs. Your osteopath will work with you to develop a personalised treatment plan that is tailored to your specific needs. In general, you may need several sessions over the course of several weeks or months to achieve optimal results.
5. Is osteopathy covered by medicare?
Unfortunately, osteopathy is not covered by medicare. However, if you have been experiencing a muskuloskeletal condition for a number of months, which would be considered chronic, you may be eligible to include osteopathy as part of your recovery team under the governments Enhanced Primary Care Plan. This is a scheme where medicare will provide a rebate for visits to members of your primary care team for up to 5 visits.
If you require more information about this scheme, speak with your general practitioner.
Osteopathy is a holistic healthcare approach that can be used to treat a wide range of conditions, from back pain to digestive issues. Despite its growing popularity, there are still many misconceptions about osteopathy that need to be addressed.
By understanding the truth about osteopathy, you can make an informed decision about whether it is right for you.