Our Bodies are Awesome!! How many times have you heard of someone who was told that they would not be able to walk following an injury, only to see them walking? Or really any “you will not be able to do XYZ” story that ends up a fallacy.
As health practitioners we know a lot about the human body. However, we do not know it all. Our experience and training help us to make predictions on recovery and prognosis. Yet the human body can still amaze us.
While certain structures within the body can be injured there is great scope for healing and repair. Just because it is not in original condition does not mean it will not work as well as it originally did. There may have to be a little extra work on your part – for example a painful shoulder with a calcific tendon may require additional strengthening of the other shoulder muscles to take the load off the calcific tendon to allow healing and repair. There may be full recovery of the tendon, or some calcification may remain. The overall outcome though would be a strong shoulder that functions as it did before becoming painful.
Injury isn’t a full stop!
My message here is that an injury or issue isn’t a full stop. If you find yourself with a practitioner focused on what you are not able to do, rather than what you are able to do it may be time to see if there is someone else to assist you along your rehabilitation journey. Don’t get me wrong there are precautions and possibly some activities to avoid in the short term. A skilled practitioner will be able to assist you with preparing your body for returning to your desired activity and letting you know when it is appropriate to progress on. It is great to have goals to reach towards.
In the case highlighted at the start of someone being told that they would not walk again following an injury – you can still aim high. If the goal is something you truly desire let it be known and surround yourself with people to help along the way. Our bodies are amazing and with conscious drive towards a goal who knows what you can achieve.
Written by: Glenda Walters – Physiotherapist and Exercise Physiologist
Dry Needling and Osteopathy. What is Dry Needling?
Osteopath Dr Jess Watson explains
Dry needling is a treatment that uses fine, single-use needles, the same as those used in acupuncture. Dry needling and Osteopathy is becoming more common. Your osteopath may use dry needling in conjunction to other osteopathic techniques when they see fit. Dry needling is used to deactivate and help loosen tightened spots within the muscle. These tight spots are known as ‘trigger points’. It is also used to improve nerve conduction, blood supply, the strength of tendons and ligaments, and to stimulate reflex mechanisms within the area.
The overall goal of dry needling is to reduce muscle pain and spasm, increase range of motion of the surrounding joints, and provide an overall increase in function of the body.
When would dry needling be beneficial?
A number of conditions treated by Osteopaths can benefit from dry needling. Dry needling will normally make up only a small part of your osteopathic treatment. The following conditions can respond well to dry needling:
Back and neck pain
Rotator cuff injuries
Acute sporting injuries
Chronic pain conditions
together dry needling and osteopathy can be very helpful.
Is it painful?
As pain is a subjective experience, no patient’s experience with dry needling is the same. However, as the needle used is so fine most patients do not feel the needle pierce the skin.
Most commonly once the needle has entered the muscle, a small twitch or cramping sensation can be felt. There may be a small ache, slight numbness or heaviness. This feeling normally subsides and can be considered a good sign. The ache can indicate that the correct point has been found, and your muscle will soon relax.
Will I feel sore after?
Most patients respond very well to this form of treatment, however, similarly to all manual therapy techniques, some soreness may occur. Any sorenesss usually resolves 24-48 hours post treatment.
Is it the same as acupuncture?
No. Dry needling does use the same thin needles, but the objectives of the treatments are different. Dry needling is most commonly used to treat tight areas of muscles, known as ‘trigger points’. Acupuncture however focuses on inner body energy (Qi). Acupuncture needles are placed in very specific points to help facilitate and improve the Qi. Stimulating Acupuncture points can allow the body to properly heal.
Traditional Chinese Medicine and Acupuncture is a separate degree at university.
Dry needling is an adjunctive course for Osteopaths. Practitioners who have a degree such as an Osteopathy or Physiotherapy can do the training.
Osteopaths that utilise dry needling are, therefore, not acupuncturists unless they also hold a degree in Traditional Chinese Medicine, or a masters of Acupuncture.
This broccoli salad recipe is a favourite of ours! Full of anti-inflammatory spices and magnesium, this broccoli salad not only packs a flavour punch, but it will make you feel great as well. This salad not only tastes great but it’s good for you too, Broccoli is packed with vitamin C and fibre! Perfect as a side dish for any dinner or to take for lunch at work
Broccoli Salad recipe.
1 head of Broccoli, cut into florets and steamed
1 red Capsicum, roasted, peeled and cut into strips.
1/2 cup Cashews lightly toasted.
120g Baby Spinach leaves.
1/4 red Onion, very thinly sliced
Juice of 1 lemon.
1 heaped teaspoon of curry powder.
1 heaped teaspoon of smokey paprika.
1/2 teaspoon Turmeric.
2 tablespoons of Olive oil.
1 tablespoon Tahini.
Salt and Pepper
Put dressing ingredients in a clean jar and shake to combine
If the mixture is too thick, combine with a little water until you get the desired consistency.
Spray or drizzle olive oil on a whole red capsicum and bake capsicum in a hot oven until the skin starts to blister and soften away from the flesh.
Allow the capsicum to cool slightly and peal away the skin (should remove easily) and then cut into strips
Steam the broccoli being mindful to not overcook so it is still firm and then allow to cool
Combine all ingredients in a Salad Bowl and lightly toss.
Kale Chips can be a great way to get all of the health benefits of kale in a tasty crunchy snack. I am sure you have heard that kale is packed full of vitamins and fibre making it a true superfood. Kale is naturally high in
B vitamins – essential for converting nutrients you consume into usable energy
Vitamin C: essential for the growth, development and repair of tissues. Assists in the development of of collagen, helps us to absorb iron, assist the function of the immune system
Fibre – improving digestive function and bowel health, lowers cholesterol and assist in controlling blood sugar levels and maintaining health weigh
Magnesium – Good for bone health and calcium absorption
Making your own kale chips is easy and better and cheeper than any you can buy in stores (that are often high is salt). So long as you do not drench them in old and salt. If you keep cooking time under 10 minutes it helps to retain many of the nutrients in the kale
Kale chips are the nicest of treats with the naughtiest taste!!! Give this easy 4 Ingredient recipe a shot, you wont be sorry
1 bunch of kale, washed, stems removed
1/2 teaspoon Garlic Powder
1/2 teaspoon Fine Celtic Sea Salt
Preheat the oven to 120 degrees while you massage olive oil into the kale leaves. Lay the kale leaves out on a lined baking tray in one layer, being careful not to let the leaves overlap. You may need more than one tray or to do the kale chips in batches.
Combine the garlic and salt in a small dish and sprinkle sparingly on top of the kale leaves.
Bake in the oven until chips are completely dry and crispy. If the leaves are looking a bit brown, try turning the oven down. Cooking them for longer at lower temperature results in greener and crispier chips.
There is no denying that pregnancy is one extremely daunting experience for many women (especially the first-time round, am I right?) and that is OKAY. Comparing the parenting advice from your friend Jane at lunch who has 3 kids under the age of 6, to your mother’s advice which usually revolves around “oh, I never worried about that with you” can be extremely stressful and can make you feel as though you need to pour coconut oil over your entire life to survive. However, there are many support systems in place to help you along the way for both your physical and mental health. This blog article is aimed at shedding some light onto how Osteopathy can assist you on your pregnancy journey. It is NEVER too late to see an Osteopath along your journey, whether you plan to deliver vaginally or by C-section. During pregnancy, there are many structural changes that occur, which can impact on your daily functioning. Due to biomechanical changes experienced during pregnancy, this can result on additional pressure on the spine and pelvis. This may lead to certain musculoskeletal pain and additional ailments which can impact on a woman’s wellbeing. Changes that you are likely to see
Shift in your centre of gravity
Softening of ligaments
Increase in blood volume by almost 50%
Conditions that you might experience.
Pelvic Girdle Pain
Lower Back Pain
Upper Back Pain
Swelling of the legs
Fatigue and Exhaustion (you are growing life remember!)
High or Low Blood Pressure
Who are we? I hear you say it in your mind, “Ost-E-O-path…it’s something to do with bones, isn’t it?” correct, BUT we consider all your body systems and how they impact on your wellbeing through our wholistic approach to your health.
Government registered allied health care professionals, who attend 5 years of accredited university study inclusive of clinical practice, anatomy, physiology, pathology, neuroscience and osteopathic studies.
Osteopathy is covered by most private health funds and by Medicare’s Chronic Disease Management Plans, DVA patients, State Worker’s Compensation schemes and motor accident insurers (1).
We take a thorough medical history, perform an extensive musculoskeletal examination and any other special orthopaedic or neurological testing if deemed necessary in the consultation.
Hands-on treatment approach to suit your individual wellbeing goals and alleviate pain.
We are highly skilled in supporting women throughout their pregnancies. Our role is to be supportive, aid in maternal biomechanics to help reduce pain and possible difficulties with labor.
So, how can Osteopathic treatment during pregnancy help my journey? With limited medication considered safe to take in pregnancy this leaves very few options for pain control. Osteopathic treatment in pregnancy is safe for both mothers and babies and uses non-invasive and gentle techniques that are carefully selected to minimise any risk and to assist the body to adapt to pregnancy-related changes. Pregnancy brings dramatic musculoskeletal changes that alter normal biomechanics, accompanied by ligamentous strain, increased muscle tension and decreased range of joint motion which can cause pain (2). In a recent study, the most common pregnancy related health conditions that women reported were musculoskeletal complaints including back pain at 39.5% (3). A study of 430 pregnant women found that feelings of depression, anger, anxiety and raised cortisol levels were associated with back pain and leg pain during pregnancy (6).
As Osteopaths, one of our main philosophies is that structure and function are interrelated and symbiotic. Our treatments aim to normalize the structure so that it functions as efficiently as possible. We use techniques that will assist the natural process of pregnancy and birth by aiding the body to adapt, adjust and align as the pregnancy progresses.
We use manual therapy techniques such as soft tissue massage, mobilisation of joints, myofascial stretching and joint manipulation (when deemed safe and appropriate), visceral techniques and Osteopathy in the Cranial Field. Osteopathic Manipulative Treatment (OMT) is a body-based treatment that offers a conservative, non-invasive option for relieving pregnancy-related LBP while increasing back-related function (2).
Studies suggest that Osteopathic treatment provided during the third trimester of pregnancy lessens or halts the deterioration in back-specific functioning that often characterizes the third trimester of pregnancy and thereby provides an important clinical benefit when used as a complementary therapy (4). They also indicate that providing OMT as a complement to conventional obstetrical care during the third trimester of pregnancy has beneficial outcomes (5). Benefits of Osteopathic Treatment in Pregnant Women
Decreased Duration of labor
Decreased Sacroiliac Dysfunction
Decreased Low Back Pain
Decreased Carpal Tunnel Symptoms
Decreased Use of forceps during delivery
Decreased Likelihood of having a preterm delivery
Decreased Blood Pressure
Decreased Fluid Overload
Decreased Probability of having meconium-stained amniotic fluid (8)
Download our free “Basic Pregnancy Stretches” HERE– Before commencing, remember to take this to your Osteopath, GP, Obstetrician to get clearance. How can Osteopathy help on your post-partum journey? Regardless of the type of labour and birth, women can experience a wide range of postnatal issues that can impact their function. Like pregnancy, there are limited medications deemed safe for breastfeeding. Your Osteopath may advise you to make return visits with your newborn to help prevent or manage conditions to help you meet your baby’s needs, whilst caring for your own. Conditions you may experience post-partum;
Back and neck pain due to postural challenges relating to breastfeeding.
Fatigue, anxiety or depression due to sleepless nights and the constant changes you experience as a new mum.
Incontinence and constipation due to changes in the pelvic floor and pelvic mechanics
Lifting babies, prams and capsules causing musculoskeletal strains and sprains.
Pelvic imbalance from pregnancy and labour (including C-Sections).
mosteopathy.org.au, (2017). Retrieved 12/11/2017. Osteopathy: About Us. From www.osteopathy.org.au.
Hensel, K., Buchanan, S., Brown, S., Rodriguez, M., Cruser, D. (2015). Pregnancy Research on Osteopathic Manipulation Optimizing Treatment Effects-The PROMOTE study A Randomized Controlled Trial. The American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, V (212), p1-16.
Frawley, J., Sundberg, T., Steel, A., Sibbritt, D.,Broom, A., Adams, J. (2016). Prevalence and characteristics of women who consult with osteopathic practitioners during pregnancy; a report from the Australian Longitudinal Study on Women’s Health (ALSWH). The Journal of Bodywork and Movement Therapies (available via Science Direct subscription). V (20). p.168-172.
Licciardone, J., Buchanan, S., Fulda, K., Stoll, S. (2010). Osteopathic Manipulative Treatment of Back Pain and Related Symptoms During Pregnancy: A randomized Controlled Trial. American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology. V (202). p.1-15.
Licciardone, J. (2017). Osteopathic Manipulative Treatment During the Third Trimester of Pregnancy. The Journal of the American Osteopathic Association. V (117). P.289-290.
Field, T., Hernandez-Reif, M., Diego, M., Schanberg, S., Kuhn, C. (2006). Stability of mood states and biochemistry across pregnancy. Infant behaviour and Development Journal. V (29). p262-267.
Saurel-Cubizolles, MJ., Romito, P., Lelong, N., Ancel, PY. (2000). Women’s health after childbirth: a longitudinal study in France and Italy. International Journal of Obstetrics & Gynaecology. V (107). P 1202-1209.
Lavelle, J. Osteopathic Manipulative Treatment in Pregnant Women. The Journal of the American Osteopathic Association. V (112). p343-346.