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OSTEOPATHIC TECHNIQUES

Massage

Massage

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There are many forms of soft tissue massage. Sports, remedial, Swedish etc… In my humble opinion, this is based more on brand design, marketing and a desire to repackage what has been a tried and tested therapeutic aid for millennia. The muscles have the same points of origin and insertion they have always had. They perform the same actions they performed in the time of Cro Magnon man.

Stimulation of these muscles can take the form of:
a) Longitudinal or cross fibre technique
b) Trigger point work which locates specific spots within a muscle commonly known as pressure points or
c) Fascial manipulation. Before Duncan performs any joint mobilisations it is likely that he will use one or more of these techniques.

Kinesiotaping

Kinesiotaping

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I use Rocktape (my personal preference) to protect and support the early stages of recovery. The tape is waterproof and usually stays in place for about five to seven days.

Muscle activation

Patient education

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This can take the form of pain science education. Removing some of the fear from a patient. Revealing why they hurt. It can be as simple as explaining what that radiographers report really meant. Empowering patients. Giving them self efficacy. Spending time and talking and listening to somebody is undoubtedly more essential than the latest gizmo and fancy technique.

Muscle Energy

Muscle Energy

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Muscle contractions of the patient, usually against resistance, are used to lengthen and relax muscles.

IASTM

IASTM

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Instrument-assisted soft tissue massage is certainly not a new idea. Egyptians and Romans among other cultures have used objects to manipulate the body over thousands of years. The subtle difference is I use a stainless steel instrument which is easy to clean as opposed to a bone. The believed effect is to change the neural feedback to the brain and to increase local circulation.

Mobilisation and Manipulation

Mobilisation and Manipulation

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Mobilisation is the smooth progressive and gentle working out a joint through its full range of motion thereby increasing mobility in restricted areas. Manipulation is a sudden release of a joint through a swift and precise movement, usually accompanied by a popping sound.

Muscle activation

Muscle activation

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Developed by south African physio Doug Heel, activation uses a system of reflexes throughout the body that ‘wakes‘ up muscles. Once greater activation takes place they can function to their maximum potential in strength, power and endurance typically as part of an ongoing rehabilitation process.

Acupuncture

Acupuncture

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An increasingly common adjunct to manual therapy. It is true to say that science has not fully explained the how and why of its efficacy. What I can say is that in eighteen years of using it I can see an amazing response in some patients and others that report no change at all. It is for this reason that I use it as part of my treatment programme rather than rely on it solely.

Exercise Rehabilitation

Exercise Rehabilitation

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As part of the patients self-management of a problem, exercises that are specific will be given. It’s up to you if you do them. Eight out of ten patients will cease once they are symptom-free. That’s understandable. I do the same. I’m just as weak (and human) as you. The bottom line is this Treatment + exercise ( mobility + strength)+sleep – psychological stressors = resolution.

Common conditions treated

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For many years this was the most frequently treated issue an invoice practice. It is much misunderstood and misdiagnosed (“discs slipping” nerves trapping joints going out of place“)

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Quite often when a patient describes themselves as having neck and shoulder pain they are in fact talking about pain in the trapezius muscle or even the thoracic spine. This condition has now probably overtaken lower back pain as my most commonly treated condition due to increasingly sedentary work practice.

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A catch-all term for a variety of more specific issues with the glenohumeral joint. Typically tendonitis, ligament injuries, rotator cuff tears and bursitis tend to be the culprits behind reported “frozen shoulders”.

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Firstly the bad news. If you’re over the age of 30 then there a good chance that on x-ray your knees, lower back or hips will be showing the sign of degenerative changes. Secondly the good news. It’s normal. Really. Don’t worry! It doesn’t have to hurt. These changes can sit in the background for most of your life without worrying you. Often when a patient tells me they have hip pain they are worrying about arthritic hip joints but more often than not they end up pointing towards their gluteal muscles of their Sacro iliac joints.

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Often the cause of these changes be linked to cervical spine origins or tightness in the musculature of the upper neck.

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This may seem flippant but we will treat conditions as diverse as rib injury to groin strain. From calf tightness to plantar fasciitis. Osteopathy is a manual therapy that treats the whole body and the individual rather than just one specific area or one condition i.e. lower back pain.