Osteopaths offer effective treatment and care aimed at promoting patient health. People of all ages see Osteopaths from infants to the elderly, who receive physical treatment, health and sometimes exercise advice, adapted to individual needs.
Osteopaths are highly trained healthcare professionals with experience in the musculoskeletal system (MSK)-that is, the muscles joints and related tissues and their interaction with other body systems.
People who visit an osteopath regularly show strong satisfaction with the care they receive, voicing high confidence in their osteopath’s diagnosis and recommendations, with ratings over 90 per cent for satisfaction and trust.
They also work closely with other practitioners in health care, such as consultants, GPs, nurses, midwives, physiotherapists.
Please visit our website booking page to find the closest Osteopath practice we have in either Glasgow or Ayr.
So more about what Osteopaths do
Osteopaths will use a wide variety of gentle hands-on strategies that concentrate on releasing tension, maximising mobility and optimising functionality, as well as providing useful health advice and exercise where possible.
They will also consult with other healthcare professionals, or refer you to them as necessary to ensure you receive optimal treatment. They take the time to understand each patient – their unique combination of symptoms, history of medicine and lifestyle. It helps make a detailed evaluation of the cause of your problem (not just treating the site of discomfort), and formulate a treatment plan with you to achieve the best outcome.
How osteopaths can help
For MSK disorders, such as back, arm, joint, muscle and arthritic pain, people commonly visit osteopaths. Osteopaths have a well-deserved reputation for excellence in the treatment of these conditions which is based on evidence.
People also visit osteopaths for a number of other health reasons like neuromuscular disorders including sciatica, digestive problems, headaches and prevention of migraines.
Many osteopaths work in private healthcare clinics nationwide, and you can visit them without a GP referral.
Education and Enrolment
Osteopaths are strictly regulated, and are listed by the NHS as an associated health occupation.
By regulation, for work in the UK, an osteopath has to be certified with the General Osteopathic Council (GOsC). A Bachelor of Science (BSc.) or Integrated Masters (MOst.), plus more than 1000 hours of clinical placements (direct patient contact time) must be completed before an osteopath can receive registration.
To retain their annual GOsC registration, osteopaths must comply with compulsory continuous professional development (CPD): maintaining up-to-date skills and knowledge and maintaining high professional development standards.
What to expect from visiting an Osteopath
When you first visit an osteopath it’s natural to feel a bit unsure about what to expect. The information below explains what happens and answers any questions you might have.
Osteopaths are healthcare professionals specially trained in the treatment of health problems. The Osteopath will ask you questions about your medical history and lifestyle, as well as any symptoms you might encounter at the start of your first consultation. This is very valuable because it will help them identify correctly and recommend appropriate treatment.
They’ll write down what you tell them. In compliance with the standards of practice set by the General Osteopathic Council and the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), these will be regarded as confidential. If you wish, you may request a copy of your notes but an administration fee may be paid for this.
The osteopath will need to look at the area(s) that cause discomfort in your body. Sometimes the cause of the problem may be different from the discomfort (for example, pain in your lower arm may be connected to your neck’s nerves) so you may need to investigate your entire body. For any tightness in the muscles and rigidity in the joints, they will need to feel and may need to reach certain areas to identify issues. They’ll explain what they do as they go along with it.
If you are unhappy with any aspect of this, you have the right to ask them to stop your treatment at any time.
What to Wear
As with any healthcare consultation, the osteopath may need to ask you to remove a few garments. It is so that they can see and touch the body’s areas of concern for you. Your osteopath will want you to feel comfortable, so if you feel uncomfortable undressing your clothing, your osteopath may be able to suggest wearing clothes, such as shorts and a t-shirt, or close-fitting clothes, so please discuss this with them.
You might want to seek treatment from a same-sex osteopath as yourself. You are also welcome to ask a friend or relative to accompany you during your appointment and to be present.
The osteopath will make a diagnosis and will discuss a recovery plan with you. This may include more manual therapy visits – a series of gentle hands-on exercises that concentrate on releasing tension, strengthening muscles and improving mobility. Along with activities you can do at home and helpful advice designed to help you alleviate or control your pain, stay active and preserve the best of health.
At your first consultation, most osteopaths will start the care, but sometimes they may need more testing, i.e. blood tests or scans, first. They may also diagnose a condition they are unable to handle, and may refer you to your GP or other qualified health care professional.
Is Treatment Painful?
Osteopathic treatment is typically a very gentle procedure, and osteopaths work very hard to make care as painless as possible, but during and after treatment, you may feel some discomfort. The osteopath will alert you if they think the procedure, they are about to use is going to be painful, and if you tell them you feel too much discomfort, they’ll stop.
After care you may notice a slight soreness in their body area that has been treated, this will typically go away within 48 hours. If after treatment you have severe or irregular symptoms you can immediately contact your osteopath for advice.