What is Osteopathy?
Osteopathy is a type of alternative medicine that focuses on the physical manipulation of the body’s bones and muscle tissues. The objective of this practice is to ensure a safe healing process for the entire body.
What Does an Osteopath do?
An osteopath focuses on the health of joints, muscles, nerves, ligaments, and tendons via non-invasive manual therapy. Using their acquired technical skills they manipulate just the right spots, allowing your body to heal where it needs healing. An osteopath tends to deal with issues such as sports injuries, muscle spasms, ankle sprains, and Achilles tendonitis. The objectives of these physicians include reducing muscle pain, increasing physician mobility, and improving blood circulation.
What is Chiropractic Treatment?
Chiropractic treatment is a popular profession that focuses on the joints of the body and their connection to the nervous system. In most cases, the primary practice of this profession is the work that is done on the spine area of patients. In this profession, adjustments are utilized to reinstate joint functions in order to ensure the well-being of the nervous system. Chiropractic treatment, which is alternative medicine, helps patients to keep healthy without having to take medication and undergo unnecessary surgery.
What Does a Chiropractor Do?
Chiropractors are trained to evaluate your situation and accordingly give you a treatment plan. One of the main practices of chiropractors is the manual manipulation of the bones of the spinal canal. The chiropractor would use his hands in order to apply controlled pressure where he thinks treatment is needed. This practice tends to improve the functions of the targeted joints.
Chiropractors also work with areas not related to the spine such as arms and feet. Apart from the massaging of the joints, chiropractors may use other techniques such as thermal and ice ultrasound in order to treat their patients.
Primary Differences Between Chiropractors and Osteopaths
There are similarities between a chiropractor and an osteopath as they tend to perform certain tasks affiliated to one another; however, more differences than similarities divide the two practices. The main difference between chiropractic treatment and osteopathy is that chiropractors tend to focus primarily on areas associated with the spine while osteopaths are more concerned with the whole body. A chiropractor would only manipulate or adjust the joints while an osteopath in addition to that task, would also massage the muscles and advocate for other rehabilitative methods.
This means an osteopath has the function of the entire body in mind as one interconnected system, while a chiropractor focuses on one part. An osteopath in addition to joint manipulation would for instance tackle issues such as respiratory, cardiovascular, and digestive difficulties. These areas become connected to the functions of joints as a tight muscle could result in difficulties breathing for a person in particular.
To conclude, chiropractors use adjustments mostly, while osteopaths have a broader approach in their treatments as they use supplemental methods.
Osteopath vs. Chiropractor: How to Choose
Let’s say all of a sudden on a Monday morning your back starts hurting. This is in addition to your already developed knee pain. Other than admitting the fact that this is a bummer, what you need to do is decide whether to see an osteopath or a chiropractor. To reiterate, a chiropractor would mainly focus on the spine while an osteopath would take care of the body as a whole.
Given the essence of these professions, a chiropractor may be the best option for your back problem, whereas your knee issue might fare better in the hands of an osteopath. Based on your hypothetical situation, you may want to go to an osteopath in order to find out if an all out body treatment is the way to go for you.
Another deciding factor that not a lot of platforms discuss is the fact that X-rays are often involved in the practice of chiropractors. It is no secret that most people prefer avoiding X-rays; therefore, osteopathy may seem like a better option to many since all the treatments are manual. At the end of it all, it should come down to whether you know what exactly is wrong with your case. If the issue is not spine-related, then perhaps osteopathy should be your preferred treatment.
Another point that should be considered in your decision is the amount of time you can spend for your treatment. We all have busy lives and even a weekly appointment might be too much for some people to bear. In most cases, a chiropractor would take care of your case in one session.
There may be additional sessions depending on the respective case; however, their practice and the nature of it is set in a way that the norm is to do one single session every few months. On the other hand, for osteopathy, multiple sessions are needed since the task in hand is demanding for an osteopath. Since this practice considers healing the entire body no matter the specifications of the given issue, multiple visits may be encouraged for you.
The History of Osteopathy
You may have asked yourself how some of these treatments came to be. In the case of osteopathy, this practice was developed by Andrew Taylor Still who was a physician and a surgeon, in the United States in the late 1800s. Yes, this practice is older than you are. The ideology of Still was that, in order to achieve the healthiest human state, all parts of the body should work together harmoniously. This take is the reason why the treatment of the entire body is encouraged no matter the issue of the patient. Still’s goal was to treat his patients without the use of surgery and medicine.
According to him, medicine, in order to work effectively, should be simple; therefore, his persistence in non-invasive medical practices. This belief of him stemmed from the ineffective medical operations of his time due to limited medical advancements. As the people of his town grew fond of him because of the positive results of his alternative medicine, the word regarding his practice was heard elsewhere, resulting in his popularity to grow significantly.
The demand for his treatment became so high that he had to pass on his knowledge to his students in order to be able to take care of all the patients properly. Ever since then, this practice has seen nothing but growth as today it is being practiced in 65 different countries.
Education Requirements for Chiropractors and Osteopaths
Prior to letting a person crack all your joints, you may think about what it is that qualifies them to work with such sensitive body parts. A mistake on their behalf could be dangerous for a patient, consequently, they better be extremely educated in what they do. Well, they are. For instance, for somebody to become an osteopath, he needs to complete a bachelor’s degree in applied science or health science. Following that, he needs to complete a master’s level degree in osteopathy in an accredited program. This means 8 years of being a medical student! You also need to do a ton of work as a rookie in different medical offices in order to be qualified for this practice.
For chiropractic medicine, a person needs to complete at least six years of postsecondary education, with more than 5,000 hours of training in the profession. Following these steps, a person must complete a mandatory exam and if successful, then that person could request a license for chiropractic medicine.
Please visit NewM Clinic to see more information regarding these practices, and hopefully book one of the top-notch services. Your joints would thank you for it!
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Is osteopathy better than physiotherapy?
Osteopathy is a better treatment option for those who prefer manual treatment than equipment based treatment.
Assessment and Treatment: What should I expect?
Your physician would examine your body, examine where you feel agony, and based on that recommend a treatment option. For osteopathy, the assessment may take a whole session.