What can I expect on the first appointment?

For both adults and children, the aim of the longer first appointment is to formulate a
diagnosis or working model of what may be contributing to a patient’s problem and to
decide from this a useful course of action. Treatment is usually provided at the first visit if
safe and appropriate to do so. This involves using our hands to encourage changes in the
body tissues to help alleviate the presenting problem and improve general health. A
treatment plan will also be given to provide you with an idea of how quickly you may
expect to improve. Subsequent visits will focus on treatment and do not take as long. See
below for details of what to expect when we see patients at different ages:

For adults:

Your osteopath will start by taking a case history during which questions will be asked
about the reason for your visit, your general health, lifestyle and medical history. This
enables them to understand your problem in the context of you as a whole and your
overall health. Read more…

For Children:

This initially involves the osteopath asking a series of questions from the child (if
appropriate) and their parent in order to provide a case history. During the case history,
questions will be asked about the reason why you have brought them to see us, your
child’s general health and their medical history. Read more…

For Babies:

The osteopath will ask a series of questions from you about your baby in order to provide a
case history. During the case history, questions will be asked about the reason why you
have come, details about your health during the pregnancy, the nature of the delivery (in
order to establish the impact on you baby’s body) and your baby’s health and medical
history. Read more…

What should I wear for my appointment?

Osteopaths often include postural assessment during the first appointment and when re-
assessing on subsequent appointments. This is easier when we can actually see your
back/legs so we may ask you to remove outer clothing. Some people prefer to wear
leggings/shorts so that they do not need to remove trousers and spaghetti-strap vests
which can be lifted to see the lower part of the back as necessary. In some cases,
treatment can take place in loose fitting clothing or leggings. One piece garments, such as
dungarees or dresses are much harder to work around. You may be requested to remove
jewelry such as necklaces, chains or large earrings.
It is very important that you feel able to communicate any wishes, questions or concerns
you may have at any point before or during your visit.

How many visits will I need?

The first consultation includes a full assessment and diagnosis and your osteopath will
usually advise you about roughly how many treatments they think will be useful to change
the restrictions/tensions they identify. Different patients respond to treatment at different
rates, so we re-assess patients at each appointment and can sometimes revise this
number depending how quickly or slowly your body responds.

Do patients (adults or children) experience any pain or discomfort during or after
treatment?

Osteopathic treatment is not usually painful and more often feels pleasantly relaxing.
There are a few osteopathic techniques which may feel uncomfortable at the time, similar
to deep massage. If you feel any pain or discomfort during treatment we would encourage
you to mention it so that the technique may be modified if necessary to make it more
comfortable. There are many different types of techniques and those we mostly use on
children and babies are gentle and non-invasive. These techniques do also work for adult
patients.
After treatment, you may experience temporary sensations of mild soreness as your body
adjusts to the change and settles. A more commonly reported response to treatment is
tiredness and a need for rest, which we would encourage you to take. Some parents report
that their children sleep well after treatment. Occasionally babies become overtired shortly
after treatment and they would then appear more cranky but this seldom lasts longer than
a few hours after which a general improvement may be seen.

What training is required to be an osteopath?

The first consultation includes a full assessment and diagnosis and your osteopath will usually advise you about roughly how many treatments they think will be useful to change
the restrictions/tensions they identify. Different patients respond to treatment at different
rates, so we re-assess patients at each appointment and can sometimes revise this
number depending how quickly or slowly your body responds.

Do I need to be referred by my GP/consultant/midwife/health visitor?

Whilst many other health professionals, including GPs, consultants, health visitors and
midwives recommend osteopaths you do not require a referral for treatment. Osteopaths
are primary heath care practitioners, trained in clinical diagnosis so do not require a
doctor’s diagnosis in order to treat. However, if you are planning to use your insurance
policy to claim for treatment, please check your policy. There are a few policies which
require GP or consultant referral in order to authorize payment for private treatment.

Can I claim on my health insurance for treatment?

Osteopathic treatment is included on most private health insurance policies and we are
registered with most of the major healthcare companies. We advise you to contact your
insurance company prior to booking an appointment to check that you are covered for
osteopathy. Please mention that you are covered at the time of booking and bring with you
any documentation or authorization codes to your first appointment. Many health cash
plans also cover osteopathy.

What happens if I am unable to attend my appointment?

Sometimes there are unforeseen circumstances which mean that either a patient or an
osteopath is unable to attend a prearranged appointment. If we are unable to make an
appointment, we will ensure that the patients are informed as soon as possible. If you are
unable to make an appointment, please get in touch with us as soon as possible to
rearrange the visit. Notice of a cancellation gives us the opportunity to offer the space to
someone else who may need it. If less than 24 hours notice is given, we may charge £25,
unless we are able to fill the appointment. If an appointment is not attended without prior
notice being given, we reserve the right to charge the full fee.

 

If your query has not been answered, please send us an .