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Alternative Treatment for Neck Pain; Osteopathy

Author: Andrew Mitchell


osteopathyInstead of looking at each symptom of an illness separately, osteopathic medicine is a kind of medicine that looks at your entire body to figure out the best method of treatment.  Osteopathic medicine has become quite popular, especially for people who have problems with muscle and joint pain.  A lot of people insist that when you suffer from neck pain, an osteopath is one of your best resources.  It is understandable, however, that if you haven't ever visited an osteopath, that doing so might feel scary.  Don't worry-you have nothing to be scared of.  Here is what you can expect to experience when you visit an osteopath for neck pain treatment:

The first part of your visit will be an exam that feels more like a visit to a "traditional" doctor.  You'll most likely give your complete medical history and also receive a physical examination. In many cases, your osteopath might order extra tests to help narrow down exactly why your neck is in pain.  You might have an X-Ray taken to see if there is any physical damage to the vertebrae in your neck, but don't be surprised if your osteopath pays attention to other parts of your body as well! 

It is important to know that your appointment will involve a lot of physical contact between you and your osteopath.  Osteopathic treatment is very "hands on."

Your Osteopath might use any of the following methods to treat your neck pain:

Counterstrain technique:  this technique involves moving you into a position that will help your body restore motion to any of your muscles that might have been strained or restrained.

Muscle Energy technique:  In this technique, your osteopath will prescribe specific exercises.  These exercises will start you in specific poses and move your muscles in specific ways.

Soft Tissue technique:  this technique involves your osteopath putting pressure on the muscles that are near and around your spine.  Sometimes the pressure is deep, other times it involves traction or rhythmic stretching.

Thrust technique:  Your osteopath will use a high velocity force to reintroduce movement to your joints and muscles.  Thrust is used to correct any asymmetry in your muscles. This method should also take care of any restricted movements, tissue changes or muscle tenderness you might have been experiencing.  

Your osteopath might also use a low level laser or acupuncture techniques to help treat your neck pain.

This might sound very scary but don't worry-most people don't experience any pain when they visit their osteopath for neck pain treatment.  In fact, most people who visit osteopaths find their treatments to be relaxing and pleasant!

A number of people often confuse osteopaths with chiropractors, but it is important to understand that the two professionals, while seemingly similar, are actually quite different.

Article Source: 

About the Author:

Andrew Mitchell, editor of Osteopath Network, writes articles about osteopathy, back pain, neck pain and soft tissue injuries. If you are looking for a London osteopath or for an osteopath in the UK please visit his website.

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Additional Information and webpage by Paul Susic MA Licensed Psychologist Ph.D. Candidate                                      

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