Frequently Asked Questions about Osteopathy
Our Osteopath is registered with all major Health Insurance providers. We ask all patients to pay us directly and then issue fully detailed receipts for you to reclaim costs from your Health Insurance provider. It is advisable to check with your Health Insurance company what your annual cover for Osteopathy is.
Yes, of course. Many clients bring in their partner or a family member as they find it helpful to have someone else with them. There is either a chair or sofa in each treatment room to accommodate an extra person. All clients under 18 are required to bring a chaperone.
No, you don’t need to bring any paperwork with you. If you are taking various different prescription medications then it may be useful to bring a list with you. If you have copies of any previous radiology reports or medical letters to do with the condition you are seeing us about, then these also may be useful, but they are not essential. If you have had any previous X-rays or MRIs and your Osteopath thinks it would be useful to have a copy in order to fully assess your condition then it is a very easy process for us to request copies – we just need your permission and a signature.
Many local GPs do recommend us to their clients, but you do not need a referral. Anyone can book an appointment with our practice.
Of course we understand you may need to reschedule your appointments from time to time. The best way to do this is to call us. We ask for 24 hours’ notice otherwise we charge a late cancellation fee (which is half the treatment cost). Missed appointments are charged at the full cost of the treatment.
We send out text reminders to all clients who provide us with their mobile numbers. This means you have a prompt to call us if you realise you can no longer attend your appointment.
The demand for appointments is high, which means we run a waiting list system. When you cancel your appointment, this means we can contact those in pain waiting for a treatment.
Your Osteopath is fully trained and is able to identify not only disorders that respond to Osteopathy but also those that require onward referral.
More and more people are turning to Osteopathy because they want a natural approach to health, avoiding addictive drugs or irreversible surgery.
As with any medical procedure, there are some risks associated with Osteopathic manipulation. These are usually mild and involve transient discomfort. Any significant risk will always be discussed with a patient before any treatment commences.
Sometimes it’s difficult to tell whether your pain is just muscular or not. We would recommend having an initial consultation and examination with our Osteopath in order to accurately assess your condition. Osteopaths receive more in-depth training and are able to diagnose whether or not your pain is just muscular or whether there are underlying issues relating to your joints and ligaments. Depending on their findings they will then advise on an appropriate course of care which may include massage as well and Osteopathic treatment.
There is a difference in philosophy, techniques and the general approach to a problem. Chiropractic training includes a greater emphasis on neurology and diagnostic imaging; osteopathic training places greater emphasis on soft tissues. There are more Osteopaths than there are Chiropractors in the UK, although the common ground between the two professions has increased greatly in the last 20 years.
We have both professions represented at the clinic and Taunton Osteopaths is situated within Taunton Chiropractors Centre. Both our Osteopath and Chiropractor treat the same range of symptoms and both use soft tissue techniques, medical acupuncture and manipulation. Their style and techniques do vary due to their training which slightly different and specific to each respective profession. Both our Osteopath and Chiropractor work closely together and in some cases co-manage patients.
The important thing is to find a therapist who suits you and you feel comfortable with. We offer a free pre-consultation chat which gives you a chance to meet our practitioners without any obligation. If you are looking at different clinics, always be sure to check that you see a properly qualified practitioner. Both professions are regulated and practitioners must be registered with either the General Chiropractic Council or the General Osteopathic Council.
We allow up to an hour for the first appointment and 20 minutes for follow-up treatments. Occasionally your appointment may be either shorter or longer depending on the type of treatments you receive.
Yes, most clients will receive a treatment on their first visit. Occasionally, in more complex cases, the Osteopath may not provide treatment if he requires either copies of medical records or if he suggests a referral for an x-ray or MRI scan. Some clients request that they only want a consultation and examination on their first visit as they would either like a “second opinion” on a condition or would like to go away and consider their options before embarking upon a treatment plan.
Your initial examination involves a series of simple movements which test your muscles, nerves, ligaments and bones to see how well they are all functioning together. From these tests your Osteopath uses their expert knowledge and experience to diagnose exactly what your specific issues are. Your pain may be because muscles are in spasm, nerves are trapped or bones are out of alignment, or any combination of theses issues.
An individual report of findings will be clearly explained and what treatment you receive will be tailored to your needs. Osteopaths are skilled in using their hands in various different techniques to release muscle tension and realign bones. Other techniques such as medical acupuncture and electric massage machines are also very effective at reducing muscle tension and may be used as part of your treatment at no extra charge.
It’s a very difficult question as it depends on many individual factors including: the severity of the initial complaint; how long the problem has been present; your age, general health and occupation. Your Osteopath will devise a treatment plan that is designed specifically for you and will only ever recommend treatment when it is necessary. By giving you advice on specific stretches, exercises and posture this will all help to speed up recovery and reduce the number of treatment sessions required.
Many problems respond to just a handful of sessions and (based on national research) clients require an average of 4-6 treatments to successfully resolve the initial pain. This may be less if you respond well or if you have a chronic problem, it may take more initial treatments plus additional maintenance treatments once every 3-6 months to prevent recurrence.
In order to properly examine you and diagnose your issue, your Osteopath will need access to your back. Our general advice is to wear loose comfortable clothing such as that you would exercise in. Avoid anything bulky like jeans or cords. You are welcome to bring items to change into or wear suitable layers underneath your everyday clothes.
Many of our female patients wear stretchy leggings or loose shorts and then a strappy camisole type top.
After the initial examination session you may not need to undress for further treatments. Your Osteopath will advise you on what to wear for any follow up treatments and it also depends on the part of the body you are receiving treatment for.
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