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What is Osteopathy?

Osteopathy is a treatment of medical disorders through the manipulation and massage of the bones, joints, and muscles. The principles of osteopathic medicine are core to the practice of osteopathy in the cranial field.

  1. The body is a unit; the person is a unit of body, mind, and spirit. This unity encompasses the complex interrelationships of all physiologic function. The fundamental difference between osteopathic and conventional training is this focus on unity of the organism, as opposed to breaking the body down into separate parts. Unity also provides a definition of health, in which all functions of the body are synchronized, coherent, and fully expressed.
  2. The body is capable of self-regulation, self-healing, and health maintenance. The emphasis on self-regulation and healing is essential to the manual practice of osteopathic medicine, because medical treatment can then be oriented toward utilizing, supporting and helping to restore the mechanisms of self-regulation.
  3. Structure and function are reciprocally interrelated. Osteopathy is based upon a thorough knowledge of anatomy (structure) and physiology (function). This understanding of the relationship between structure and function applies to molecular, cellular, tissue and gross anatomy. Osteopathic medicine applies this knowledge of structure and function in both the evaluation of tissue function and the practice of osteopathic manipulative medicine (OMM).
  4. Rational treatment is based upon an understanding of above three principles. Whenever and however treatment facilitates the patient’s inherent vitality and health, this is, by definition, the practice of osteopathic medicine. Osteopathic principles are universal and provide a framework for the practice of all of medicine. The practice of hands-on treatment applies osteopathic principles in a direct, specific and unique way to relieve suffering and enhance healthy function.

Osteopathy in the Cranial Field

Just as the lungs breathe and the heart beats, the central nervous system also has its own involuntary rhythmic motion. There is also movement of the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) around the brain, within the meninges. Because of the “blood brain barrier”, brain cells require circulation of the CSF so that all cells can receive nourishment and oxygen.

Osteopaths with specialty training in this area (the “cranial field”) work with the bones of the cranium, the fascial coverings (meninges), the fluids, and especially the central nervous system (the brain) to access the whole person, for both treatment of dysfunction and improvement of health. Sometimes called cranial osteopathy, it is an additional set of skills gained by osteopaths to better address the whole body.

Common Treated Conditions

Most people first seek osteopathic care for pain-related complaints.  These problems can be recent or long-term. They may be related to sports injuries, car accidents, falls, surgeries, birth or other traumas. Others seek osteopathic care as an alternative to surgery or medication. Common conditions treated include:

  • Head disorders, including migraines, TMJ dysfunction, trigeminal neuralgia, vertigo and tinnitus
  • Traumatic brain injury and post-concussion syndrome
  • Neck and back pain, including scoliosis, pinched nerves and sciatica
  • Joint pain, including tendonitis, carpal tunnel syndrome, rotator cuff strains/partial tears, rib strains, and hip pain
  • Chronic issues such as fatigue, and rheumatological conditions including fibromyalgia

Many patients find osteopathic treatment improves function, making it helpful for pregnant women, lactating mothers, and children. Osteopathy is particularly useful for babies with:

  • Latching/sucking problems
  • Torticollis and plagiocephaly
  • Reflux and colic
  • Ear infections
  • Difficult or traumatic births

Osteopathic care can also improve the function of many autonomic core body functions, alleviating symptoms that come from impediments to optimal physiology.

  • Breathing (including asthma)
  • Digestive disorders (including reflux and irritable bowel syndrome)
  • Poor sleep

As osteopathy involves a truly holistic approach, it supports the body’s ability to self-regulate by restoring its normal structure and function. Therefore, osteopathic manipulation can be beneficial in helping to restore health in many situations, regardless of the underlying complaint.

What to expect during your Osteopathy appointment:
During treatment you will be clothed, so we advise wearing something
comfortable avoiding tight fitting clothes or jeans.  Your first visit will include an evaluation as well as treatment which will take 1
1/2 hours.
Follow up visits are 45 min.
For children:  
We have some items available, but feel free to bring familiar music, books, stuffed animals etc. to help your child to have a relaxed and comfortable experience.
After Treatment: Your body will continue to actively work with the treatment for about three days.  We advise no aerobic activity or pushing yourself for 24 hours after the treatment to allow your body to have the best opportunity to utilize the new input. You will likely notice a general feeling of wellbeing and ease in your body. You may also notice new transient discomforts as the body readjusts from old compensation patterns.
In some cases we may connect to some older and deeper issues in the body.  Some people may notice dreams, memories, or emotional content that surfaces.  This is a good sign of moving through unconscious holding patterns and allowing transformational shifts. Some patients notice old injury pains from the past surfacing for a short while, this is also a good sign that we are getting changes on a deep level and moving through old compensation patterns that never fully healed.
Usually if you notice these things they are mild and transient, but you may want to work with other practitioners to help move these through more quickly, and easily:
Our practitioners include: Chi Nei Tsang, Ayurveda, microcurrent, individual
mindfulness sessions, Accutonnics, massage, and other healing modalities can all be helpful.
Other suggested protocol after treatment at Radiance Family Wellness:
Essential oils, Homeopathic herbal formulas, and dietary supplemental needs.
Other suggestions:
Epsom salt bath (Magnesium is a smooth muscle relaxant)
Connecting with friends and family
Get out into nature (taking a hike or working in the garden)
Psychotherapy referral: we will be happy to provide
Self Compassion: Be gentle with yourself.
This is YOU…letting go of old outdated patterns of holding in body and mind. They had a good reason to be there
originally. More self love for your bravery in releasing.
Positive Mindset: You are changing! You may notice old outdated habits spontaneously falling away. You may notice more range of motion in your body even if some areas are still talking to you and may be tighter then you would like during the process.
Transformation is a life changing and life affirming process
and we are all here to help.
Pain is more than “nerves gone bad”
Pain is a complex body, mind, spirit inter relationship that requires a multi system approach to address.
Transformational Medicine is based on real changes in the way we look, feel, and move in our bodies and our lives. This requires shifts in our perceptions. In order to transform anything, it has to be seen differently. Our view of ourselves needs to shift. We are not as static as we may have thought in the past. We agree with Deepak Chopra’s assessment of seeing the body as being undergirded by a “quantum mechanical body” composed not of matter but of energy and information. Which is now being quantified by our further understanding of quantum biophysics. Our view of the world through a Quantum understanding shows us that we are limited only by our belief in reality as we understand it to be in our definition of time. In actually, our mind and our conception of reality feedback to our lives, body and health. We are what we expect. We are limited by what we perceive to be solid, stable and unchanging. Just as light can be perceived as a particle or a wave (depending on our view), our body/mind/spirit complex becomes shifted by our ability to see our reality slightly different. Image looking through a clear quartz crystal, at first all we see is a clear stone, but if we shift it slightly in the light we can find a whole rainbow of light in the same stone.  Now image a crystal with inclusions (or imperfections) in the matrix of the crystal.  We can think of these imperfections as our limiting beliefs of body and mind, our restricted thought patterns, tensions in body/mind and “pain”.  How do we clear the imperfections in a crystal? we put it under increased temperature and pressure…
How do we transform the self…relieve pain…be someone different …change our reality?
  1. The first step is to be willing to be open to allowing ourselves to change and not standing in our own way by our old beliefs.
  2. A big obstacle to our releasing old patterns lies in the long term over activity of the sympathetic nervous system. When we have a shock or trauma (anything that the primitive brain perceives as a threat to self existence), we have an activation of the “fight or flight’.
             a.  Part of the nervous system which is accompanied by a tension in the diaphragm and breath. Indeed we hold our  emotions in our breath.  When we get stressed we can “forget to breathe” when we see something beautiful we may take a deep breath or sigh. The breath is the
connection between our emotions and our body. All of our practitioners at Radiance Family Wellness  understand this critical connection and use various modalities to affect changes in our bodies connection to the breath, the emotions, and the nervous system.
              b. With all our increasing environmental chemicals, toxins and heavy metals it is becoming increasingly difficult for our bodies to compensate and function optimally. Not only do our detoxing organs such as the liver become overwhelmed,    but some toxins decrease the nervous
systems ability to self regulate and lead to other chronic disorders, hypersensitivities and allergies. At Radiance Family Wellness we address this issue by having toxin blood/hair analysis panels available and detox programs utilizing both Standard Process(whole food based approach) as well as an Ayurvedic detox program.  Additionally, we have our Infrared Sauna available with a detox program utilizing mid and far wavelengths that we recommend using at least three times a week during your detox program and ongoing with seven specialty programs for multiple documented health benefits.
      3)  Another important element of our ability to transform is taking time for connection. We now have studies to show multiple health benefits to connecting with community/family and friends (including less heart disease, better mental health, and longer life). We also need to remember the vital importance of taking the time to connect to ourselves. Meditation and mindfulness allows the ability for us to see ourselves outside our little box. We are able to see more possibilities and choices, we feel less overwhelmed and stressed, we may even get a glimpse of what is of deep value to us and help us to create more shifts, better choices for ourselves and our future.
      4)  Here at Radiant Family Wellness we have weekly Chi Gong classes which include gentle body movements to connect  body, mind and breath as well meditation and sound bath evenings (all which open us up to the relaxing parasympathetic nervous system).

Your Practitioner

Dr. Patti Rochette

Patricia Rochette D.O. has been intrigued with the mind body connection as long as she can remember. She knew she wanted to become a doctor at the tender age of five and completed a degree in psychobiology from the University of California at Santa Cruz.

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