What is Osteopathic Manipulative Therapy?

By  ,  Onlymyhealth editorial team
Feb 27, 2012

Osteopathy manipulative therapy (OMT) involves the manipulation of body’s neural, skeletal and visceral parts physically to improve body’s own corrective machinery. It is a kind of touch therapy to treat body illness.

In OMT, the doctor touches gently to identify any disease. Then according to the disease, pressure and specific stretching is used to treat it. It is majorly used to treat numerous body pains such as back pain, headache, pain in joints and even migraine.

Age does not have any role in determining on whom osteopathic treatment can be performed. It can be performed at all ages, from newborns to old people. In newborns it is done to treat asthma, sleeplessness, epilepsy and cerebral palsy. In adults it is used to treat backaches, migraine, bone aches, muscle and joint pains.

OMT is based on a few principles encompassing human anatomy and physiology:

  • Body is a uniform assembly of mind, heart and spirit.
  • Body’s immune system is strong enough to perform any physiological or anatomical repair.
  • Function of the body is dependent on the structure of the body.

While performing osteopathic manipulative theory, a doctor must keep these principles in mind.

OMT is always accompanied by proper exercising and a balanced diet. Many people take this treatment to prevent the occurrence of diseases and to maintain well-being. It is different from other treatment techniques on the basis of other techniques’ focus on the symptoms of the disease while osteopathic manipulative therapy focuses on the causes of an illness and tries to rectify them. In cases where the disease or injury has become severe, OMT can at least improve the lifestyle of the people, if it is not able to eradicate the cause. It  can also treat the symptoms.

Though the main aim of osteopathy is to decrease the amount of medications and the occurrence of surgery, but sometimes in severe cases, the osteopath recommends taking medicines and even undergoing surgery. Some people confuse osteopathy with massage as both are a kind of touch therapy. Massage therapy aims at relaxing the body muscles while osteopathy enhances the defence system of the body.

Despite the benefits, osteopathic manipulative therapy is a controversial treatment procedure as there is no scientific evidence to prove its efficiency. If performed in a wrong way, it can prove to be very dangerous. Therefore, before undergoing OMT, a person should be aware of the pros and cons of the therapy.


Read more articles on Osteopathy.



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