Osteopathy was founded by Andrew Taylor Still, the son of a Methodist preacher and physician who decided to follow his father into medicine. He was born in 1928 and after years of study became a licensed doctor and worked as a surgeon within the US Army during the American Civil War.
Following the death of three of his children from meningitis Still became disillusioned with orthodox medicine and spent his time searching for another alternative by studying the human body and other ways to treat disease.
He believed that by using osteopathic manipulative techniques you can correct the body’s framework and restore its blood flow, thereby enabling the body to heal itself. He also believed in preventative medicine and that doctors should focus on the whole person not just focus on disease. These beliefs led to the start of a new medical approach known today as osteopathy.
Osteopathy has transformed in to a system of diagnosis and treatment for a wide range of musculoskeletal conditions. It works with the structure and function of the body, and is based on the principle that the well-being of an individual depends on the skeleton, muscles, ligaments and connective tissues functioning smoothly together.
Osteopaths believe that for your body to work well, its structure must also work well. So osteopaths work to restore your body to a state of balance, where possible without the use of drugs or surgery. Osteopathy uses touch, physical manipulation, stretching and massage to increase the mobility of joints, to relieve muscle tension, to enhance the blood and nerve supply to tissues, and to help your body’s own healing mechanisms