Patients beliefs about their Low Back Pain. Dr Matthew Franz, Osteopath, delves deeper into the science behind pain…

LET’S TALK…. People’s beliefs about their back pain and what is actually happening

Dr Matthew Franz, Melbourne Osteoapth @ City Osteopathy

 

In today’s society, lower back pain is often described as a result of issues built up over time with a direct cause. Sometimes this can be the case, however it’s the way we interpret our back pain and the pain science behind it that has recently come into a more prominent view point.

Louis Giffords Mature Organism Model via NOIjam.com

Have I lost you yet?

Well to break things down a little, the word ‘pain science’ can be described as “ The nervous system’s processing of their injury, in conjunction with various psychosocial aspects, determines their pain experience”. (Louw et al., 2011) The way I look at pain science myself, is the way we interpret our own pain. It can be the way we recognise it and then construct it in our mind, which then determines the way our body reacts to it, as seen above.

For example you will notice that every time you have a sore back, you won’t bend down as it tends to hurt. However over time your brain has associated this action with pain and interprets it as harmful to the body. So you don’t perform that movement to the best of your ability, which in turn develops a feedback loop.

It is crazy how many times people describe their back pain as being caused by a slipped disc or weak core. They have been conditioned to think that these are the issues that have caused their back pain. It might play a factor however its the health professionals that influence them into thinking they need constant treatment in order to feel better.

 

I’m bursting the bubble and telling you that back pain is normal thing! It is how we manage your back pain that makes the difference.

What are you trying to get at then?

A systematic literature review of MRI findings on people with spinal related changes in their back WITHOUT SYMPTOMS by Brinjikje, W., Luetmer, P.H., Comstock, B., et al. found that:

  1. The study suggests that imaging findings of degenerative changes, such as disk degeneration, disk signal loss etc are generally part of the normal ageing process rather than pathologic processes requiring intervention.
  2. That >50% of asymptomatic individuals 30–39 years of age have disk degeneration, height loss, or bulging. This suggests that even in young adults, degenerative changes may be incidental and not causally related to presenting symptoms.
  3. The results from this systematic review strongly suggest that when degenerative spine findings are incidentally seen (ie, as part of imaging for an indication other than pain or an incidental disk herniation at a level other than where a patient’s pain localises), these findings should be considered as normal age-related changes rather than pathologic processes.

So what can we do about it?

My advice is to first stop worrying about the pain and look at how we can address it. Look at the the factors that may be affecting it and how can we have control over it. This allows you to gain a better understanding of what is actually going on.

I understand it may hurt and play up from time to time, however the way we view our pain will help toward healing it. This combined with proper management and treatment, staying healthy and stretching are all very important. As osteopaths we can get you to the point of feeling comfortable about your pain and hopefully get you feeling better sooner rather than later!

Dr Matthew Franz Osteopath at City Osteopathy

References

Brinjikji, W., Luetmer, P., Comstock, B., Bresnahan, B., Chen, L., Deyo, R., Halabi, S., Turner, J., Avins, A., James, K., Wald, J., Kallmes, D. and Jarvik, J. (2014). Systematic Literature Review of Imaging Features of Spinal Degeneration in Asymptomatic Populations. American Journal of Neuroradiology, 36(4), pp.811-816.

Louw, A., Diener, I., Butler, D. and Puentedura, E. (2011). The Effect of Neuroscience Education on Pain, Disability, Anxiety, and Stress in Chronic Musculoskeletal Pain. Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, 92(12), pp.2041-2056.

The Benefits of Visiting a Melbourne Osteopathic Clinic for Athletes

image of a Therapist giving lower back sports massage to athlete male patient in clinic

Osteopathy plays an important role in the strength and conditioning of athletes. This type of alternative medicine is fast becoming a common solution for athletes in the prevention and management of sports-related injuries. Professional athletes who undergo high-level sports training on a regular basis find osteopathy highly beneficial as it provides a host of benefits, all of which contribute to excellent overall performance.

 

How does osteopathy help athletes?

Sports injuries are common, especially among athletes involved in contact sports. Bruises, sprains, and muscle strains are part of an athlete’s life. As injuries are inevitable in the world of sports, athletes turn to osteopathy in keeping their bodies conditioned and at the best shape possible on and off season.

In essence, osteopathy deals with problems that involve the musculoskeletal system. It identifies, diagnoses, and treats problems relating to bones, tissues, muscles, and ligaments. The broad approach of osteopathy makes it easier to identify problems such as localized pain or general complaints among athletes.

 

The benefits from regular visits to the best Melbourne osteopathic clinic are as follows:

  • Minimise risk of future injuries.
  • Overall improvement of health and performance.
  • Prepare the body for training by identifying and treating imbalances resulting in increased performance.
  • Manual techniques utilised by osteopaths help increase muscular strength, improve flexibility and may even improve lung capacity.
  • Post-training and post-game, osteopathy helps release pain and may guarantee faster recovery from injuries such as fractures and traumas.

 

What osteopathy treatments are commonly provided to athletes during their visit at a Melbourne osteopathic clinic?

The best osteopath will tailor the treatment on an athlete’s sport, level of training, lifestyle and general health conditions. All of these factors help create an effective treatment plan that will help athletes excel and improve their overall performance.

 

Common osteopathic treatments include:

  • Joint articulation
  • Joint manipulation
  • Sports taping
  • Soft tissue massage
  • Deep tissue massage
  • Prescription of functional exercises

 

If you wish to learn more about how osteopathy can help you improve your performance as an athlete, or simply want to get rid of aches and pains, you may book an appointment today. Call us on 03 9663 5450.

WORK, LIFE BALANCE?

Work, Life Balance.

Not much said about this of late we have noticed. We agree its a bit of a ‘wanky’ term, but the inherent message is a good one.

One of our clinic directors at City Osteopathy, Melbourne Osteopath Dr Shane Heslop has just had a 9 day adventure holiday in NZ mountain bike riding in the wild west coast region of the South Coast. No mobiles, no roads, only helicopter extraction via sat phone if you muck up. SUPERB!! About 10-12 people were seen each day, either MTB riders or trampers. Most over 60, most semi retired. Most common comment? WORK IS OVERRATED!!

We love our work, but too many of us work too much and don’t value the important things. Check out ‘The Old Ghost Road’ MTB trail, its amazing!!

The Top 3 Reasons to Visit the Best Osteopath Clinic in Melbourne

image of a Digital composite of highlighted spine of woman with back pain at home

Osteopathy is steadily gaining traction in Melbourne. This healthcare discipline aims to treat pain and discomfort of the musculoskeletal system and how it can affect other distal issues like our organ systems. These include the nervous system, lymphatic system and circulatory system.

 

Although osteopathy is a common complementary healthcare modality for back pain, the scope of practice of the best osteopaths extend to diagnosis and if relevant, treatment of other musculoskeletal conditions such as migraines, abdominal pain, pelvic pain, and chest wall pain among many others.

 

Major principles of osteopathy

 

The best osteopathy doctor in Melbourne will tell you that utilising osteopathy in improving general health and wellness, and reducing pain, is an absolute must. Instead of visiting a chiropractor or a physiotherapist, a consultation with an osteopath in Melbourne may be more beneficial for the following reasons:

 

  • One of the main principles behind osteopathy is that the human body’s anatomical structures and physiological functions are connected and interrelated. In order for the body to function optimally, vital organ systems such as the neurological, musculoskeletal, circulatory, and visceral structures are closely integrated at all times.
  • The primary aim of osteopathic physicians is to improve a patient’s overall health and wellbeing through Osteopathic Manual Manipulation or OMM.
  • The most common concerns addressed by osteopathic physicians are as follows:
    • Musculoskeletal pain and dysfunction along the spinal region, upper and lower extremities, pelvic region and thoracic region.
    • There are also adults who seek consultation from osteopathic doctors due to frequent headaches and migraine attacks.

 

If you wish to book an appointment at our Melbourne clinic, you may reach us

on 03 9663 5450 today.

What can an Osteopath Located Near Me Do for My Well Being?

Image of a Man having chiropractic back adjustment

The demand for the services of chiropractors and osteopaths has been steadily rising in recent years. Although both disciplines are focused on improving physical well being through pain relief, their approaches are vastly different from one another.

In this article, we will discuss some of the similarities and differences between osteopathy and chiropractic medicine. Learning more about osteopathy and chiropractic medicine will help you decide on which professional to see, thus saving you money and providing you with the right set of treatments for long-term benefits.

First, we look at the similarities,

  • Chiropractors and osteopaths in Melbourne both treat musculoskeletal pain and discomfort.
  • Practitioners are required to acquire relevant qualifications in order for them to be  certified as competent in providing treatment to patients. Professionals in both fields are also required to undergo continuous training to provide first-class care to patients.

Is osteopathic manipulation the same as chiropractic?

As you can see, osteopaths and chiropractors both aim to provide relief to patients suffering from different musculoskeletal conditions. Understanding what sets them apart will help you in painting a clear picture of which treatment is best suited for your case:

  • Chiropractors can render relief from pain and discomfort by joint adjustments and manipulation of the spinal column as well as limbs. They often believe that the cause of pain is due to joint subluxations.
  • Osteopathy also relies on manual manipulation, but combine this with a huge amount of soft tissue mobilisation and gentle techniques aiming to reduce soft tissue tension which can impact onto joint health, we believe this allows our treatment to have longer standing effects. Our goal is to restore structural alignment and to reduce soft tissue tension to alleviate pain and enhance overall function of the musculoskeletal system.
  • Chiropractic treatment generally provides for shorter treatment times than Osteopathic treatment.  Longer treatment times allows your Osteopath to delve deeper into your problem and understand better your psycho emotional situation, your pain situation and to undertake more gentle, calm treatment options.

Now that you have some basic knowledge about the two disciplines, we hope that it will help you make a decision on whether osteopathy is the right treatment for you.

 

If you wish to know more or set up an appointment with us, you may reach us on 03 9663 5450.

Where to Find the Best Migraine Treatment in Melbourne?

Image of a Beautiful Young Woman Feeling Strong Head Pain

Migraines and headaches are some of the most debilitating conditions a human being can encounter. Almost 15% of the Australian population suffer from these medical conditions which result in low productivity, reduced sense of wellbeing and lots and lots of pain.

There are many treatment options available for getting rid of migraines and headaches. The field of osteopathy has its own treatment system that aims to alleviate migraine symptoms both in terms of intensity and frequency. In fact, osteopathy delivers a holistic and natural  option to treating migraines.

Osteopaths are chronic migraine experts

Spinal Manipulative Therapy  is one of the techniques of osteopathy that aims to treat the cause of headaches and migraine attacks, namely that related to your neck and spine. According to research, osteopathy can alleviate pain and discomfort caused by acute headache attacks and cervicogenic headaches.

The following osteopathy-based treatments can render good outcomes for patients:

To eliminate the pain and discomfort associated with a majority of headaches, hands-on manipulation techniques include:

  • Sub Occipital muscle decompression is an excellent intervention for migraine headaches. This technique involves the use of fingertips to stretch out the paraspinal tissues located at the base of the occiput.
  • Myofascial unwinding is an osteopathic solution that manually unwinds the fascia and tissues that interconnect into your neck, back and occiput.
  • The spasms caused by tension headaches can be significantly reduced through cervical massage of the paraspinal soft tissues.

Research has suggested manual therapy can be effective with chronic migraine and headache problems treated with manipulation and gentle muscular release techniques and may well have greater efficacy as popular headache medications which really only treat the symptoms, not the cause.  Although the effectiveness of manipulative treatments is less popular than the use of traditional headache medication, people are now leaning towards osteopathy for headache and migraine relief to avoid side-effects and for long-term cost effectiveness.

 

If you have migraine or frequent headache attacks and want to experience relief and optimal results, call us today on 03 9663 5450.