Osteopathy is a manual therapy practice aimed at restoring the functions of all structures and systems of the human body. The purpose of osteopathic treatment is to stimulate the body’s capacity for self-regulation.
Osteopathy is based on extensive understanding of the health sciences and the specific interactions that maintain homeostasis (balance within the organism). As such osteopathic treatments address relationships between the different bodily systems
Individual osteopathic consultations are founded on a thorough and precise understanding of each person’s motif for consultation, their medical history and physical examination. Treatment plans are consequently developed according to client goals and the therapist’s clinical reasoning.
Dr A.T. the originator of osteopathic medicine in the United States described osteopathy as a Science an Art and a Philosophy.
- It is described as a science because it is based on the fundamental scientific principles of anatomy and physiology.
- It is an art because through an acquired skill in the quality of palpation, the hands of the therapist can perceive regions of tension and imbalance.
- It is a philosophy because the osteopathic clinical reasoning takes into account the importance of providing a therapeutic intervention for the whole person.
Individual osteopaths develop their practice according to their initial education as well as their individual interests, and often develop expertise in specialised domains such as pediatrics, TMJ problems, and sports or performing arts related injuries.