You do not need the referral of a doctor to be seen by an osteopath, although some patients do come to us following GP advice.
Osteopaths treat the whole person so during the first consultation your osteopath will ask you a lot of questions to gain a good understanding of your case (known as a case history). This is followed by a thorough examination, where you will be asked to undress to your underwear if you are happy to do so. You may be asked to perform some movements, and the osteopath may move different parts of your body to see how they are functioning, or do additional tests. This allows the assessment of the relevance of different parts of your body to your presenting problem, and the diagnosis of possible causes of your problem.
For children, we will check all your child’s developmental milestones related to their age. For babies, this examination will involve undressing your baby to their nappy, with the nappy being removed to assess hip mobility and muscle tone for a short period. For older children, it is important to check their physical development and posture, which may involve them undressing to their underwear. Teenagers may prefer to wear a strap top.
Your osteopath will then talk to you about what they think is causing the problem. They will also talk to you about possible treatment options, ensuring to keep you informed about any benefits or potential side effects. If a referral is indicated, and normally only with your permission, we may need to write to your GP or other healthcare practitioners.
Your first consultation may take up to an hour, and (depending upon many factors) may not always result in treatment. If this is the case (and it is appropriate) then you will be re-booked for a further appointment as soon as possible. Treatment techniques that may be used during a first or subsequent consultation include a wide range of gentle, non-invasive applications such as deep tissue massage, joint articulation and manipulation. Where techniques are undertaken, your osteopath will always ask for your consent in advance. They will also advise you about lifestyle issues, such as exercise, diet or work posture, which may help you.
The price for an initial consultation which will last between forty-five minutes and an hour is £60 , with all future consultations lasting 30 minutes and costing £47.