Should I see an Osteopath or Chiropractor?
I had to do some research into this field on account of my ridiculous back. Without rhyme or reason every now and again I am unable to walk!
Nothing had happened that I know about, and yet I can be bed ridden for 2-8 days at the whim of an evil god somewhere.
Enough was enough, I wanted help, but did not know the correct way to turn.
I am a wimp-let’s put it out it out there! I am extremely scared about being popped clicked or manipulated, but feel I have very little option if I wish to live a normal life.
I decided to do a consultation with both and Osteopath and Chiropractor and decide then.
First was the chiropractor. Chiropractors from what I can tell tend to focus mainly on the alignment of the spine as the primary means to relieve problems. This was the focus of the session, and he showed me the various stresses being placed upon my body due to misalignment and bad posture, various models of the spine and vertebrae. He said he could treat me after a further scan, the treatment programme was explained to me and I walked away very confident in the process.
Next was the Osteopath appointment. Whilst waiting, I read some of the pamphlets in the waiting room and was able to learn a little about the discipline. Whereas chiropractors focus primarily upon the skeletal structure, osteopaths look at the body as a whole, drawing from many methods to help and improve it’s efficiency, function and work towards correcting the structure. It treats a broad range of problems throughout the body- from digestive and circulatory, to muscular, soft tissue and nerve related issues.
The appointment was similar at the beginning, although the lifestyle and medical questions that I had to answer were much more extensive than at the chiropractor. My examination was certainly more hands on. The osteopath gave me a full physical before recommending and discussing further information he would like before proceeding. To my surprise, I was actually treated on the day, at the consultation, and I left the property with a core/hip exercise to engage my muscles to strengthen/prevent further problems.
This little “hip trick” really worked for me, it involved engaging a core muscle before doing anything-sitting down standing up, rolling over. It was difficult at first, but a re-learning how to bend when doing anything truly was a revelation! On the strength of this I decided to opt for the Osteopath option-The great variety of techniques to influence the body’s own healing mechanisms appealed to me more than the thought of permanent adjustments.
I am happy with my choice, I am sure that chiropractors are very good with the back, but my problem was with my hip and back- and the holistic approach, ethos and treatment style of an Osteopath just seemed a better fit for me. I also experienced some unexpected positive side effects! After a few sessions I noticed a welcome reduction in headaches and digestive problems that I had been having. It turns out that these symptoms are often related to injuries in other areas.
Don’t be scared of treatment! Try it, it has improved more than just my bad back!