At the initial visit the osteopath will spend time taking a detailed case history. This will involve asking questions about the patient’s current symptoms, general medical history and lifestyle. In the case of children and babies, the osteopath will also ask about the pregnancy, birth and neonatal period. It is also useful to bring along your child’s red health record book.
The patient will usually be asked to remove some clothing, or to undress to their underwear depending on their symptoms, in order for the osteopath to carry out a thorough examination. The osteopath may ask you to carry out a series of movements to assess range of movement, and may also carry out other diagnostic techniques such as reflexes and blood pressure.
The osteopath will discuss with you the most appropriate treatment plan and advise on the likely number of sessions required to treat your condition effectively. Half an hour of this first appointment will usually consist of treatment.
If the osteopath thinks that your condition is unlikely to respond to osteopathic treatment, you will be advised about how to seek further care. Osteopaths are skilled in diagnostic techniques and trained to identify when a patient needs to be referred to a GP.
To assist the examination you may be asked to remove some of your clothing or undress to your underwear. If you feel uncomfortable about removing certain items of clothing you may want to bring a pair of shorts and a vest top/loose t-shirt to change into before your examination. During treatment we will make sure that you are comfortable at all times and towels/blankets can be supplied to cover any areas not being treated.
You are welcome to bring along a friend or relative with you at any time if this makes you feel more comfortable.
All children under 16 years of age must be accompanied by a parent or carer.
The initial appointment lasts for one hour consisting of a consultation and on average 30 minutes of treatment. All subsequent appointments last for 30 minutes.
Mum and baby checks require us to take a full history for mum and baby. The initial appointment for this lasts 90 minutes and includes treatment of both mum and baby.
All babies treated at the clinic are also offered a free 10 minute check, up to 4 weeks after their treatment has concluded.
The osteopath uses a variety of techniques to restore normal function. Treatment is different for every patient and will vary depending on your age, fitness, diagnosis and preference. Techniques may include rhythmic joint movements/articulation, gentle releasing techniques, joint mobilisation, soft tissue stretching and massage. Treatment of babies and children is for the most part carried out using the very subtle, gentle, but powerful cranial approach to osteopathy, and is applied to all areas of the body. The osteopath will explain what will be involved in any treatment.
Many private health insurance policies provide cover for osteopathic treatment. It may be possible to claim for a course of treatment but you should check in advance with your insurance company before seeking osteopathic treatment, in order to confirm the available level of cover and whether you will require a referral from your GP or specialist. If you will be claiming using private health insurance please inform our receptionist when booking your first appointment. In the majority of cases the patient will be required to pay the clinic for each treatment and then reclaim the fees from their insurance company.
Please note that Warrington and Moreton Osteopaths have withdrawn from accepting BUPA & AXA health insurance patients.
All osteopaths have to complete a degree course of at least four years that combines academic and clinical work. The course is similar to a medical degree, with more emphasis on anatomy and musculoskeletal medicine, and includes more than 1,000 hours of training in osteopathic techniques.
All of the osteopaths at Warrington and Moreton Osteopaths have completed further post graduate training in cranial osteopathy. In addition to this Atsuko has also completed a foundation course in classical osteopathy, and Sarah completed a 2 year Postgraduate Diploma in Paediatric Osteopathy (read our Meet the team section for more detailed information).
Osteopaths are required to update their training throughout their working lives, and must complete at least 30 hours continuing professional development per year.
Reactions to treatment are variable.
Adults: You may feel a little bit stiff or sore after treatment; this will quickly subside and is a normal, healthy response to the treatment. Osteopathy is a safe and effective form of treatment and most patients feel substantially better for it.
Babies and Children: often the baby or child is very relaxed afterwards and sleeps well. Others have a burst of energy after treatment, usually followed by a good night’s sleep. Occasionally children are unsettled after treatment; this is a temporary situation and usually clears within 24-48 hours.
The osteopathic profession in the UK is governed by the General Osteopathic Council (GOsC). Since 2000, the title “Osteopath” has been protected by law. This means that it is a criminal offence to describe oneself as an osteopath unless registered with GOsC.
Only practitioners meeting the GOsC’s high standards of competence and safety are eligible to join the register, and they must also provide evidence of good health, good character and professional indemnity cover.
Most patients ‘self refer’ to an osteopath for treatment. However, a patient may like to see their GP in the first instance if they have concerns. If the osteopath feels it is necessary for a patient to see their GP then they will advise them as such, and with the patient’s permission may also contact the GP to inform them of details of any examination findings or to request further information.
Currently, access to osteopathy on the NHS is limited, but services are becoming more widespread as commissioning authorities recognise the benefits of providing osteopathy to patients. To find out if NHS treatment is available speak to your GP and/or contact your local primary care trust.
For an appointment at our Warrington clinic please contact reception on 01925 573300.
For an appointment at our Moreton clinic please contact reception on 0151 678 8833.
For more information, or if you have any other questions, you can contact us by phone or by email firstname.lastname@example.org
If you should ever have a complaint or concern about the level of care you have received from an osteopath or any member of staff please let us know.
In the first instance make your complaint to the receptionist or osteopath either in person, by phone, letter or email. We will work to resolve your complaint promptly and in confidence, and will use your comments to review and where appropriate improve our service.
If you do not feel that your complaint has been resolved to your satisfaction you can talk to an independent source about it by ringing the Institute of Osteopathy on freephone 01582 488 455 or email email@example.com
If you are concerned about safety and you wish to instigate a formal complaint with the regulatory body, you can contact the General Osteopathic Council (GOsC) on 0207 357 6655. Please note that the GOsC cannot award compensation.