Why Osteopathy

Osteopathic Manual Practitioners are not Osteopathic Physicians.

Manual Practice of Osteopathy Practitioners graduating from the Canadian College of Osteopathy are enrolled in a five-year program and are allotted two years to defend a thesis.

Why osteopathy?

– Since manual practice of osteopathy has and distinctive approach, it is concerned to look for the cause and not soothing the symptoms, it addresses the person as a whole and with respect and care.

– Because his founder, Dr. Andrew Taylor Still, founds osteopathy on four concepts:

“The structure governs the function“ meaning that the structure that is under compression, restriction, blockage or fixity will have a direct effect on the functions of the tissues and the organs in relationship with that segment or structure. Osteopathy believes and is concerned about the interrelationship of structure and function.

“The role of the artery is absolute” suggesting all the body fluids must circulate freely. Finding health in a patient is helping relieve any form of obstruction, compression creating stasis of the venous, lymphatic, cerebrospinal fluid and transmission through nerve fibers.

“The unity of function” is the importance of all parts of the functional unit, its relationship between all systems and when one functional unit is perturbed it will be transmitted to other parts of the body.

“The system of auto regulation” advocating the restoration of mobility, vitality and position will enhance the body’ natural ability to heal. The body properly nourished has the potency to fight, repair and maintain normal health.

–  Since osteopathy is interested in the whole person and in the craniosacral corelink as founded by Dr. William Garner Sutherland founder in the science of cranial osteopathy. He has also established five anatomical components of the peripheral respiratory mechanism, an inherent rhythm of the brain and central nervous system.

– As osteopathic manual practitioners assess and care for the body structures in its position, mobility, and vitality with gentle hands-on approach for soft tissue, tissue mobilization, cranial osteopathy, visceral when applicable and when according to the medical condition of each patient.

Course notes from Collège d’Études Ostéopathiques de Montréal / Halifax, 1992, http://www.osteopathie-canada.ca/en

Ontario Association of Osteopathic Manual Practitioners (OAO), http://osteopathyontario.org/

What is Osteopathy?

“Osteopathy is a natural medicine which restores function to the organism by searching the causes of pain and imbalance. To achieve this goal, an osteopath uses the quality and fines of his or her palpation skills to determine the position, mobility and quality of the tissues.”

Osteopathy is an art and a natural science which restores function to the organism by investigating and treating the causes of pain and discomfort.

We believe it is an art and a science. It is the art of manual treatment by the trained hands to collect information about all the tissues and to give care accordingly to the methodology of the College. It is the art because it has the involvement at the human level of the heart of the osteopath desiring to help the person in its entire being. It is a science that focus on the knowledge gathered by the constant studying of the anatomy, physiology and the importance of biomechanic, postology, embryology, and pathology.

Osteopathy is looking at the body as an engineer will look at a structure. In osteopathy, any disturbance of function will bring a tissue change or a structural change and an osteopath is trainned to find with their hands and via different tests where the disturbance first occurred. As we look at the human body as a whole unit, we will investigate what brought on a disturbance in the harmonie of the organism in its health.

In Canada we are trained in Manual Practice of Osteopathy, we are not physicians (see links) and we are trained as practitioner to care for individuals of all ages with variety of health conditions.

Pain caused from direct trauma or from disturbance of structures resulting from abuse, repetitive strain, adhesion, emotional exhaustion, myofascial (dural) tension, disturbance of the function of joints or bone bringning compression on venous, arterial or nervous flow, it is obvious that consequences in the long run will mannifest itself in changes of the tissues in the organism. In ostopathy we call these structural changes “lesions” and they might present themselves in any of the tissues of the systems. For any lesion found either in the musculoskeltal, ciculatory, digestive or nervous system and so on, it is a patient-centered focus care, treated as an entire person. (physical, mental, emotional and spiritual being)

Dr. Sutherland discovered, developed and taught Cranial Osteopathy in the early to mid-1900s. His Cranial concept was the extension of Dr. Still’s science of Osteopathy. The Primary Respiratory Mechanism has five basic components:

1. The inherent rhythmic motion of the brain and spinal cord.

2. The fluctuation of the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) that bathes and nourishes the brain and spinal cord.

3. The shifting tensions of the membranes (dura mater) surrounding the brain and spinal cord, acting as a unit and is called a ” reciprocal Tension Membrane”.

4. The inherent rhythmic motion of the cranial bones.

5. The involuntary motion of the sacrum between the ilia.