Osteopathic manipulation, also known as osteopathic manual manipulation (OMM), is a form of hands-on therapy most commonly used to treat musculoskeletal conditions; however, it can also handle issues with other bodily systems. By restoring balance to bones and muscles, OMM allows your entire body to work more effectively.
At Santa Cruz Osteopathic, osteopathic physician Dr. Richard Bernstein takes a holistic approach to the body, its injuries, and its diseases. He focuses on the “whole person” to prevent, diagnose, and treat illness and injury, using nonsurgical, hands-on OMM to encourage the body to heal itself. When is osteopathic manual manipulation the best choice? Here’s what the expert has to say.
What is a DO (doctor of osteopathic medicine)?
Osteopathic medicine began in the late 1800s in Kirksville, Missouri, by a physician who saw that the medical practices of that time often caused patients more harm than good. He developed a system of hands-on medical care to promote the body’s innate ability to heal itself.
Doctors of osteopathic medicine believe that all the body’s organs and systems work together and affect each other. They view the body, mind, and spirit as integral parts of one larger, interconnected system. While DOs have special training in healing the musculoskeletal system, they’re licensed to treat the full range of health conditions in all 50 states.
DOs don’t just treat symptoms. Instead, they aim to find the root cause of those symptoms and treat the condition to promote better overall health. To accomplish this, they evaluate your:
- Activity level and exercise habits
- Lifestyle and environment
- Physical and mental health
- Stress levels
- Sleep habits
Each category can give clues about the underlying problem and help with an accurate diagnosis and appropriate treatment.
When is OMM the best choice?
OMM is most commonly used to treat back pain, a common complaint, but it can treat many other conditions, including:
- Breathing issues, such as asthma and sinus infections
- Bowel issues, including irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and constipation
- Chronic pain, including many forms of arthritis, fibromyalgia, menstrual cramps, and migraine
- Joint pain
- Carpal tunnel syndrome and other radiculopathies
- Pregnancy problems, such as edema, insomnia, and sciatica
Dr. Bernstein uses OMM to move muscles and joints using stretching, gentle pressure, and resistance, among other techniques. This restores structural balance and creates a healing environment.
6 benefits of osteopathic manipulation
OMM has many benefits, and here are the top six:
- Helps people regardless of age or background
- Eases pain, promotes healing, and increases overall mobility
- Restores muscle and tissue balance
- Improves nerve signaling
- Promotes increased blood flow throughout the body
- Can improve the efficacy of, or even replace, pharmaceuticals or surgery
If you want to improve your health with nonsurgical and nonpharmacological treatment options, OMM can be a great choice.
If you’re looking to get the most out of OMM, especially if you fall into the middle-age plus category, gentle yoga, or even walking, can boost your benefits. These modalities:
- Strengthen muscles
- Help keep weight steady
- Lower your risk of heart disease, stroke, colon cancer, and diabetes
- Strengthen your bones (regular walking could halve the number of people over 45 who fracture their hip)
- Help reduce blood pressure
- Improve balance and coordination
- Decrease risk of falling
- Keep joints flexible
- Improve your energy levels and stamina
And more than just the physical benefits, low-impact exercise can Increase your confidence and mood, helping your overall well-being.
Give Santa Cruz Osteopathic a call at 831-464-1605 to set up a consultation with Dr. Bernstein, or book online with us today.