Katharine McLarty, Osteopathic Manual Practitioner
Help me understand what Osteopathy can do?
Updated: Nov 25, 2020
Imagine that the red house is your house.
What do you notice? Well, very obviously…
The structure is compromised;
There is tension and compression on the internal & external components;
Meaning that in addition to the obvious structural problems, there are changes to the function of the plumbing (supply & drainage), electrical, HVAC and other systemic changes.
So what do you do first?
Do you fix the internal components or the structural?
Do you try to fix what looks wrong or figure out what has caused these changes and address that first?
You would probably hire an engineer to determine the root cause of the problem and put the plan in place to address those issues first. By addressing those structural issues first, the function of the internal systems mentioned above may return to ‘normal’ function (provided no damage was done), but localized work on various systems may be required once the structure is level, square and plumb, to ensure all systems (and the structure) function optimally.
By now you are asking – What does this house have to do with Osteopathy? Great question … let’s compare the components of the house to our body.
Foundation Structure Bones & Ligaments
Exterior Walls Structure Skin & Fascia
Interior Walls Structure Tendons & Muscles
Electrical System Internal Nerves
Plumbing Internal Arteries, Veins & Lymphatics
HVAC Internal Heart, Lungs, Endocrine System
Now consider – what happens when there is a structural change to the body, such as this?
The tension and compression (anatomical changes) on the body can cause changes in the physiology that manifest as "dis-ease" or disease. The effects of this "dis-ease" might include pain, swelling & edema, digestion or elimination issues, reproductive issues, cardiopulmonary issues and nerve issues to name a few.
Now what do you do?
I know what some of you are thinking as you look at the images above ... "If there is compression through the head and chest, then I can change that posture by doing more exercises for my neck and upper back, or buying the latest gizmo to help my posture."
If only it were that simple, but it is not.
This thought process would be similar to hiring a contractor who tries to make everything 'look' square without investigating WHY the house looks and functions the way it does (or doesn't).
Drawing on your knowledge from the house scenario, you would hire an Osteopathic Manual Practitioner (aka the engineer who works like a mechanic on your body) to assess your body to determine the root cause of the problem, treating what is necessary. By addressing the structural issues, the function of the Nerve, Artery, Vein & Lymphatic (aka NAVL) will improve. The body is a dynamic unit of function where structure & function are interrelated; it is able to self-heal & self-regulate.
Your body functions like a blueprint, guiding the Osteopath to the areas that require treatment to restore the structure, which allows the ‘Rivers of Life’ (NAVL) to function optimally to help the body heal itself.
Book your appointment to experience what Osteopathy can do for you.