Osteopathy examines the relationship between how well your body could be working as opposed to how it is actually working.
The principles of Osteopathy are based on the following:
The first difference you may notice about osteopath vs chiropractor as a patient is that osteopaths use observation, palpation and special medical tests (involving movement or neurological tests) to help us diagnose a patient’s problem, whereas chiropractors will also commonly use X-ray.
It may seem that having more information with the X-ray is ‘better’, but the research (links found here: https://www.painscience.com/articles/mri-and-x-ray-almost-useless-for-back-pain.php) is becoming quite clear that in most cases, all an X-ray does is give you more to worry about. This can actually have a negative effect on your recovery because of something known as the ‘nocebo effect’. It’s like the ‘placebo effect’, which is where people get better when no actual treatment has been done, but the opposite. The nocebo effect makes people’s pain worse because of how they think about the problem.
There are some cases when an osteopath will refer for an X-ray or MRI when more information is needed, but this doesn’t happen too often and when it’s needed, we refer to orthopaedic specialists because there may be other ways they can help too.
Other differences between osteopaths and chiropractors come down to treatment style. Historically, chiropractors use more spinal manipulation than osteopaths, whereas osteopaths use manipulation sparingly alongside massage, stretching and exercise prescription. However, I know there are many chiropractors who are reducing the amount they manipulate now.
When it comes to osteopath vs chiropractor, in general, there are more similarities than there are differences and we always say that you need to find a therapist that works for you. Over time, we all develop our own style, and this makes each practitioner unique no matter what profession they are in.
Chris grew up with a passion for studying human form and function and wanted to be an osteopath at the age of 13. He finally achieved his dream when graduating from the British School of Osteopathy in 2008.
After graduating, Chris spent two years studying classical osteopathy before investing in the prestigious GIFT mentorship program in America in 2013 to become a Fellow of Applied Functional Science. He is also trained in Functional Range Conditioning (FRC), and can assess and coach running technique.
These courses have helped Chris understand how the body works as a whole, both from a biomechanical and movement perspective and from a physiological one.
Osteopathy is often covered by private health insurance, but in some cases it is an additional element of the policy or you may need to get a referral from your GP or approval in advance. It is best to contact your insurer and ask about the details and process for your particular policy. We can invoice direct to the insurer if appropriate.