Your first visit to us usually involves three stages:
Firstly, we will go through a full case history, asking questions to understand why you have come for treatment and to gain an understanding of your overall health. The questions might be quite detailed, to ensure that osteopathy is appropriate for you.
Secondly, we will perform a physical examination of the area causing you pain or discomfort. This will likely include assessing other areas of your body apart from the one that hurts, as osteopaths seek to understand the cause of your symptoms and consider the interrelationship between all of your body systems to see the whole.
Thirdly, we will provide you with treatment. This generally involves hands on manual therapy, such as massage or moving your joints. However, treatment may also come in the form of exercise prescription, verbal or written advice, or further referral if necessary.
Subsequent sessions generally involve a catch up about how your symptoms have changed with most of the session focused on treatment. However, if you have any new symptoms, these may need to be further assessed.
If you are a new patient, your appointment will last around 1 hour so that we can take time to take a detailed case history as well as examine and treat. Follow up appointments are 30 minutes.
Your osteopath will need to see and feel the area of your body that needs treating. We generally advise that patients wear loose, comfortable clothing, such as shorts and a vest, a tank top, or a sports bra. Your comfort is of utmost importance to your osteopath, so you will never be expected to remove any item of clothing that you do not wish to.
We treat babies days old so whenever you feel ready and able. We are also able to offer home visits if you are recovering from a c-section or have trouble getting to us.
Yes, definitely! If you would like an additional member of our team to be present during your appointment to help care for your child during your treatment please let us know in advance. They will join you in the treatment room for the duration of your appointment and help however they can to keep your baby calm and happy while you are treated.
We are often busy and have a waiting list for appointments, so please give us as much notice as possible if you need to rearrange your appointment. We know you have a busy life so we email you an appointment reminder 2 days before your appointment and text you the day before your appointment. If you are running late, please call or send us a text message as soon as you can.
Any additional information that you are able to provide which could help us understand your current state of health is helpful for you to bring. If you are on medication, it is helpful if you bring a list of your current prescriptions. If you have had any investigations, such as blood tests, an X-ray, or an MRI scan, please bring a copy of the report with you.
Our patients often report feeling ‘looser’ or ‘easier’ after treatment. Some feel relaxed, others feel energized. About half of patients feel a little sore or ‘worked on’ in the area where they’ve had treatment. This usually lasts no longer than 24-48 hours. If you have any concerns about how you’re feeling post-treatment, feel free to give us a call and we can advise you on self-care or further steps.
We usually recommend 3 - 4 treatments for your symptoms to resolve. However, if you’ve had the problem for a long time, you may require more treatments and if you’ve had the problem for less time, your symptoms may resolve after fewer treatments. Each case is individual but your osteopath should be able to give you an estimate based on your particular circumstances and state of health.
No, you do not need a referral to see an osteopath. Osteopaths are primary care practitioners and also Allied Health Professionals (alongside physiotherapists, podiatrists and paramedics) meaning you can be confident of safe and professional conduct at all times.
Osteopathy is recommended by The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) for the treatment for lower back pain. In addition, there are guidelines published by the Department of Health which advocate that osteopathy can effectively treat patients with musculoskeletal problems.
We suggest that you let your GP know if you are having osteopathic treatment, so that they can keep your patient notes up-to-date.
Osteopaths are regulated, just like GPs or nurses. You can feel assured that as osteopaths we are qualified and insured, will follow a strict set of clinical standards that protect patients’ safety and dignity, and recommend and apply the most appropriate treatment for you, which includes referring you on if necessary.
Osteopaths are regulated by the General Osteopathic Council (GOsC). It is against the law to call yourself an osteopath unless you are qualified and registered with the GOsC. The minimum qualification for an osteopath is completion of a four or five year degree, which includes at least 1000 hours of supervised clinical practice. Many osteopaths also study for masters degrees.
Once qualified, osteopaths must continue to update and expand their knowledge by completing a minimum of 30 hours per year of continuing professional development. You can check whether an osteopath is registered by visiting the GOsC website.
Of course. You may bring a chaperone to your appointment if this would make you feel more comfortable. Please make sure that if you bring someone along, you will feel happy to speak openly about your health and any conditions that you may have.
We are always happy to discuss any further questions or concerns you may have, and how osteopathy can help you and your family.