How can osteopathy help in women’s health issues?
Osteopathy can be beneficial at any stage in a woman’s life, and the types of issues that women present with are many and varied. I treat a lot of teenage girls who come in with neck and back pain related to study and postural stresses, and they often suffer from headaches and migraines as well. Osteopathic treatment can be very effective in reducing the incidence and severity of headaches, and giving some simple advice about postural change, stress management and body awareness at this age can be priceless.
Young women often have issues with low back and pelvic pain relating to their menstrual cycle, and osteopathic treatment can be hugely beneficial in reducing discomfort. Possibly the most common issue we see in relation to women’s health is pelvic pain and instability during pregnancy, which is can range from mild to severe and debilitating, and usually requires ongoing treatment and advice regarding activity and core strength. This type of advice is also important for older women with pelvic floor issues, low back pain and hip pain, which we see commonly as well.
What do you like about treating women’s health issues?
My favourite part of practice is being part of a woman’s journey through pregnancy and into motherhood. As osteopaths we are in a quite privileged position in that we are often among the first people that a woman will reveal her pregnancy to, and we get to hear about all the exciting developments that happen along the way. Pregnant women often suffer from back, pelvic and neck pain, and being able to provide some relief is very rewarding. Being a mum myself I can really relate to all the issues that arise, and I especially love sharing in the anticipation of the arrival of a new baby. The bonus is that I get to meet and cuddle the babies as well!
What’s the best experience you’ve had in your career in treating women’s health issues?
Alleviating a young woman of debilitating headaches is always a big win, as I know firsthand how hard it can be to manage day to day life like that. I’ve had some lovely experiences with treating women through major life stages- I’ve seen them grow up and embark on careers, I’ve shared pregnancies and parenting stories, I’ve seen many women becomes grandmothers, and I’ve been privileged to treat 3 generations of women in the one family. I’ve even had several overdue pregnant women over the years who swear that my treatment put them into labour! I can’t take the credit for that, but it is lovely to be part of such a special and exciting time.