If you live with chronic pain, you know how physically debilitating and emotionally draining it can be. Unfortunately, this issue is a reality for many seniors—and not all of them have the proper supports in place to manage these problems and optimize their quality of life.
In addition to eating well, exercising and taking your doctor’s advice, there are ways to deal with chronic pain, promote agility and live better as you age. Here’s what you need to know about osteopathic treatments for seniors.
What is osteopathy?
Osteopathy is a manual soft tissue treatment that resembles a slow, firm but gentle massage. It can help relieve pain from conditions that affect the muscles, bones and joints—for example, back or neck pain, arthritis, tightness or pain in the hips, discomfort from osteoporosis. Osteopaths are medical doctors and if you have group benefit coverage or health insurance, treatments may be covered. They can also treat migraines, poor posture, sciatica and plantar’s fasciitis, and often help individuals recover from injuries.
How does osteopathy help older individuals?
According to the UK’s National Health Service (NHS), “Osteopathy is based on the principle that the wellbeing of an individual depends on their bones, muscles, ligaments and connective tissue functioning smoothly together.” This involves increasing the mobility of joints, relieving muscle tension and increasing blood supply to affected areas of the body to promote healing. Osteopathy can be used in conjunction with other treatments, such as oral and/or topical medication, physiotherapy, registered massage therapy (RMT) or acupuncture. It’s not typically painful—in fact, treatments often feel comforting or relaxing.
Osteopathy is ideal for seniors as it’s gentle, efficient and in some cases, provides immediate benefit as well as lasting relief over time. It also treats many conditions that are common in seniors, like arthritis or muscle pain. Unlike massage therapy, clothing does not need to be removed during treatment (which is ideal for those with limited mobility). Many osteopathic treatments can be performed while seated while others are typically done while lying on a treatment bench. An osteopath will assess your needs and personalize your care plan to reflect your mobility, flexibility, pain centres and other factors.
Contact us to learn more about in-home caregiver services in Toronto
While osteopathy is great for many of our clients, it doesn’t replace in-home support. If you have an aging loved one who requires assistance with their Activities of Daily Living (ADLs), please reach out to our team for a personalized consultation. Our skilled, dedicated caregivers are available to help seniors live safely and independently for longer by providing personal care, meal preparation and light housekeeping services, joyful companionship and more. Please contact us if you have any questions—we service the greater Toronto area and are readily available by phone or email.