August 3, 2020

In April this year, I was appointed as a registrant council member to the General Osteopathic Council (GOsC).  However, most people may be unaware who the GOsC are and what this appointment means.  The GOsC are one of nine healthcare regulators in the UK and they are responsible for regulating osteopaths.  Other regulators include the General Medical Council and General Dental Council who have similar responsibilities for doctors and dentists.  By law, osteopaths must be registered with the GOsC to lawfully practise in the UK.  To be eligible for registration, osteopaths must demonstrate that they have a recognised qualification in osteopathy from an approved provider, have adequate professional indemnity insurance and be in good health mentally and physically.  They must also evidence a minimum of 90 hours training covering specified topics every 3 years.  The primary objectives of the GOsC are:

  1. Protecting, promoting and maintaining the health, sa...

January 17, 2020

2019 was another busy year for City Osteopaths, with Jennifer, Simon and I conducting around 2000 appointments.  Often clinic was so busy that we couldn’t always see patients at the most convenient time for them.  To address this, we have restructured our diary for 2020 to offer 20% more appointments per week than in 2019.  We will also be opening from 8.30am to give people the opportunity to come before work as well as continuing to offer appointments up until 7pm in the evening. 

We have also been busy outside of the clinic again this year.  City Osteopaths has long been the ‘go to’ clinic for many organisations in the area, but this year, Simon was able to provide treatment for the cast of various shows at Wolverhampton Theatre, including on-site for ‘Madagascar’ (pictured).  Jennifer has continued to volunteer at New Cross Hospital on the maternity ward providing breast feeding support to new families.  This role involves considerable ongoing training, which also bene...

November 1, 2019

City Osteopaths has a new service to offer our clients. Jennifer is now trained in clinical matwork Pilates with the Australian Physiotherapy and Pilates Institute (APPI) and will be advancing this qualification over the next six months. Exercise is one of the most effective treatments for muscle and joint aches and pains and can also help prevent injuries. Of all the different exercise approaches that have been studied, Pilates is consistently is shown to be one of most beneficial.  Pilates focuses on strengthening the body with an emphasis on core strength.  It involves performing a series of exercises, usually in a specific order. It was originally developed for ballet dancers by Joseph Pilates in the early 20th century. There are now several types of Pilates available based on slight modifications to the original method.

Clinical Pilates is a modification of classical Pilates, it was modified because Pilates was originally designed for very fit and healthy people.  Consequently...

August 6, 2019

There are many possible causes of heel pain, but plantar fasciitis (pronounced fa-shee-ai-tuhs, meaning inflammation of the plantar fascia) is a particularly common one that we see at City Osteopaths.  The pain of plantar fasciitis is usually felt on the underneath or inside of the heel, in contrast to Achilles tendonitis, which is more commonly felt on the back of the heel.  The pain is typically worse when walking, particularly first thing in the morning or after a period of sitting.  Usually, the pain is easier when wearing supportive shoes compared to being barefoot. 

The plantar fascia is a ligament like structure that supports the arch of the foot by tethering the two ends together – attached to the heel at one end and the base of the toes at the other.  Pain occurs when the plantar fascia’s attachment at the heel becomes strained.  This can be caused by various factors, including: a change in footwear, or an increase in time spent barefoot, an increase in exercise...

June 24, 2019

Most people will have had trouble sleeping at some time and understand the common consequences this has.  However, research estimates that up to 90% of us have suffered with sleep deprivation at some point, and up to 30% of us meet the diagnostic criteria for insomnia. This means a large percentage of the population have had issues with maintaining regular sleep. A lack of adequate sleep has been strongly linked to depression, anxiety, stress and weight gain due to the increase in the hormone, ghrelin, which makes you feel hungrier and crave foods high in saturated fat and sugar.  Lack of sleep is clearly not good news if you’re on a diet, but does it have anything to do with pain?

The links between sleep and pain

Surprisingly enough, a plethora of evidence shows that sleep and pain are interlinked. One such way, is that increased pain levels reduce the quality of our sleep, which will be obvious to anyone who has suffered with a bad back!  More importantly, is that the chronicity o...

May 17, 2019

In our society, poor mental health is considered as one of the biggest causes of disability, poor quality of life, and reduced productivity. Poor mental health can come in many forms, including negative mood, anxiety, depression, social isolation, bipolar disorder and schizophrenia.

Chronic pain (pain which has lasted more than three months) is often interlinked with symptoms of poor mental health. Pain can interfere with your daily life (both work and social) and can take a toll on your self-esteem and sometimes make you feel depressed, anxious or frustrated. Depression and chronic pain also share some of the same brain chemicals, called neurotransmitters, and nerve pathways, which act as messengers between different parts of the brain and nervous system. This connection may explain why people with chronic pain are three times more likely to develop mental health issues.

There is plenty of clinical evidence showing that exercise is beneficial for mental health, it reduces anxiety, depre...

March 28, 2019

Sciatica, or to give it its technical term, lumbar radiculopathy, describes symptoms felt in the leg because of a problem with the nerves that come from the lower back.  The symptoms can include a sharp shooting pain, pins and needles, numbness, tingling or burning.  In more severe cases, weakness in some of the muscles of the leg can occur, which may cause problems with walking.   The nerves are usually affected because of a problem with the lower back, so back pain is often felt at the same time, but sciatica can occur on its own.  The pain of sciatica is most commonly felt in the buttock, back of the thigh, outside of the calf and the foot.  Sufferers tend to find that sitting is the most uncomfortable activity, with bending usually also being affected.   

It is estimated that between 13-40% of people will suffer with sciatica at some point in their life, most commonly affecting people in their 50s.  The most common cause of sciatica is an injury to...

October 29, 2018

The placebo effect has been in the media quite a lot recently, and I often hear people wonder whether the effects of a particular treatment are ‘just placebo’.  So, what is actually happening, and does it matter if it is ‘just’ the placebo effect?If your health problem improves after receiving a treatment, there are three reasons why this may have happened.  1. The treatment you received was effective and has addressed whatever health problem you had.  2.  Your health problem got better naturally and would have done so anyway, even if you had not received the treatment.  3. The placebo effect.  This is where our belief in the effectiveness of the treatment is responsible for the improvement, rather than the treatment itself.  In reality, any improvement we see after receiving treatment for a particular condition is probably a combination of all three of these reasons.  The way the placebo effect works is complicated, but essentially involves changes in our brain physiology.  It is more...

September 7, 2018

Is Stress Affecting my Pain?

Our understanding of the relationship between stress and pain has evolved exponentially over recent years, thereby helping to expand our knowledge of what pain is and how it’s caused. The more we learn about stress, the clearer it becomes that our stress levels dramatically affect our pain and in some cases, may even be the cause.

What is Stress?

So, what do we mean by stress? There are lots of different definitions for the term stress, it could be argued that everything is a potential stressor on the body, from weight training to emotional anxiety and everything in between. However, for the purpose of this blog, we will be discussing the consequences of stress on the body, or the ‘stress response’.  This is often termed the ‘fight or flight’ response, where the body releases certain hormones as part of a survival mechanism. This stress response can be triggered by pretty much anything that feels stressful to us and can persist for a short or long period of ti...

July 24, 2018

Last week, there was a news article titled ‘Babies given solid food sooner sleep better’ featured on the BBC news website. Sleep and feeding, be that breastfeeding, formula feeding, or the introduction of solids, are issues that many parents I see at the clinic want to talk about. So hopefully, this blog will help clarify the important points that were missed in the recent news article.

There is a wealth of information from published scientific studies that shows there is no association between what a baby eats and how much they sleep. Even if hunger was the only reason for a baby waking up, the best solution would be to give more milk, as this contains more energy, fat and protein than any other food a baby can be given. However, babies wake for a multitude of reasons, such as being cold, hot or uncomfortable.

The research study that the previously mentioned news article was referring to, actually showed no difference in how much babies under 5 months old woke up, regardless of whether...

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Our Recent Posts

New Appointment to the General Osteopathic Council

August 3, 2020

A Review of 2019

January 17, 2020

Pilates now available at City Osteopaths

November 1, 2019

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