How does osteopathy work?

How does osteopathy work?

With the use of hands            

The osteopath only works with her hands. When I examine the body I concentrate on where the body tissues have limitations in their movement.  I feel for the mobility in the articulations (the muscle-bone system), the intestines, the internal organs, the cranium and the spinal cord. It is possible that the lumbar spine is at the basis of the problems because it has lost movement in a particular direction. Even the stomach, for example, or the small intestine can have limited mobility.

For those of you who studied mathematics in school, and always wondered what vectors were useful for:

Pain is the result arising from the vectors of tensions present in the body, caused by the lack of mobility in the various areas.  

The lack of mobility causes different tensions in different directions.

The different tensions result in a pain in a specific area where you must not work to diminish the tensions e therefore diminish the pain.

Through feeling it

The osteopath can decide whether this is actually the case.  The position of the pain has no role at the beginning of the examination.  Only at the end of the examination and of the treatment will the connection between the pain and the limitation of movement become apparent.

Mobilize – loosen – relax

During the treatment the ‘blocked’ tissue is mobilized by various methods.  These techniques are always finalized toward improving the mobility. In almost all the cases, that happens quite easily and without pain. So you should not be surprised if the osteopath often treats parts of the body not apparently affected by the pain the patient feels.

For example: abdominal cramps in a child can be caused at the base of the cranium. This is because there is an important nerve that starts from the cranium and goes through the organs of the abdomen. Problems with the spine or the neck can also be caused by problems originating elsewhere.  Abdominal pains can also be caused by a blocked vertebra. Since the mobility of the tissue is improved after the treatment, the body will function better. And so, the problems and pains will disappear even in the weeks after a treatment in most cases.

The toy train

To better understand a blocked vertebra and its function, let’s use the image of a toy train that has run off the tracks. It is there, frustrated in its movement with all the consequences for the nervous system: muscular contractions, local vascular system, pain and limitations on the movement in a different part of the body. Once the locomotive is gently put back on the rails, off it goes once more and all is fine again.