What to Expect
What to expect at your first appointment
When you first arrive, you will be asked to fill in a personal information sheet which includes questions relating to your past medical history and your presenting complaint.
You will then move to the consulting room where your osteopath will take a detailed history. It is important to give as much information as possible to derive the most accurate diagnosis.
Once this has been done, your osteopath will perform an examination relating to your injury. This will involve palpating (examining by touch) and moving your limbs and torso in multiple directions in an attempt to reproduce your familiar pain. You may be required to partially disrobe during the examination.
By now, your osteopath should have a working diagnosis and will treat you based on what they have found in the examination. At this point, they will also give you a detailed prognosis and recommend any stretches/exercises which they feel will assist your recovery.
How we treat
At Healing Hands Osteopathy, we have a very gentle but structural approach to treatment. We use a combination of soft tissue massage techniques, Muscle Energy Techniques (MET), counter strain techniques, functional articulatory techniques, joint manipulation techniques and cranial techniques.
There are many different ways that osteopaths can treat so if you have a preference for a particular style, this should be clarified from the onset. If there are any techniques which you do not wish to have done, please let your osteopath know. Your comfort and satisfaction is our number one priority.
How long will it take to get better?
The length of time and the amount of treatments required to get you better will obviously depend on the severity of the injury. However, we can usually give a reasonable estimate depending on what tissue has been injured. For example, a joint sprain in the back may take 2-3 weeks to recover, where a “slipped disc” may take 6-8 weeks to recover.
There are always going to be other factors involved such as age, previous injuries, likelihood of re-aggravation etc. At the end of your first visit, your osteopath should be able to give a reasonable idea of how long it will take for you to recover.
Is there anything I can do to help recover quicker?
Yes! Your osteopath will recommend things at home/work which you can do to help with your recovery. This may involve heat/ice management, mobility exercises, ergonomic advice, stretches or targeted strengthening exercises. Or, they may suggest complete rest for a period of time to allow everything to settle.
What to expect after the treatment
Different people respond to treatments differently. In most cases, people will feel they can move more freely and have an immediate reduction in pain after. However, it is normal and not uncommon to feel sore and “worked on” for 24-48 hours following a treatment.
If you are concerned that the treatment has flared up the injury, or the pain has not subsided within a few days, don’t hesitate to call and question your osteopath about this.
Will I need to come back?
This will again depend on factors such as severity of injury, age, previous injury, likelihood of re-aggravation, chronicity etc. Your osteopath will educate you on the best plan of action to deal with your injury. For an acute injury, this may only require two or three visits to resolve the problem. For long standing injuries, the best plan of action may be ongoing treatment at set intervals to prevent flare ups from occurring.