New Location - Killarney Heights Wednesdays from July 17th

Visceral Osteopathy

How many treatments will I need?

There is no definitive answer to this. Some people respond quite quickly to treatment and only need a few, while others may take months. Having regular scheduled appointments in the beginning is important and also doing self-care at home when this is relevant. Some people find that once things are under good control they may occasionally need to come for a maintenance treatment from time to time. Things that may affect healing time may be how long you have had the issue, lifestyle factors like stress, sleep, diet and exercise, your age, your overall health and any other health conditions you have and sometimes even your mindset.

Viscera means organ and visceral osteopathy is a branch of osteopathic treatment that focuses on restoring balance and equilibrium to the internal organs of the body and their associated tissue structures, particularly within the abdominal and pelvic cavities.

What techniques are used within Visceral Osteopathy?

Sometimes visceral osteopathy is likened to abdominal massage, colon massage, tummy massage or stomach massage.

Gentle tissue manipulation and release are used to improve function and relieve tension of the viscera and their associated tissues, ligaments and fascia. These tissues hold and suspend the organs and contain vessels and nerves that supply them with nutrients and provide neurological communication and feedback to the brain.

Visceral Osteopathy is also used within the context of general osteopathic treatment, and other areas that may be contributing to dysfunction are also treated where relevant.

What is the difference between Visceral Osteopathy and Abdominal Massage?

While treatment style can vary from practitioner to practitioner, abdominal massage usually has more flow and is more general than visceral osteopathic treatment or visceral manipulation. A comparative example might be the difference between having an osteopathic or physiotherapy treatment and a general massage. Visceral Osteopathy is generally more specific in its application compared to abdominal massage. Sometimes a fusion of both modalities may be used depending on the presentation of the patient and why they have come for treatment.

Do you only treat the abdomen?
The body is a three-dimensional complex structure and is therefore addressed that way. In addition to visceral osteopathic techniques, general osteopathic techniques such as mobilisation and soft tissue release are used. While much of treatment may be focused on the abdomen, other areas of the body may hold restriction and be a contributing factor. Many of the ligaments and fascia of the organs attach to the spine, and the vagus nerve, which is vital for our rest and digest state, wanders all the way from the brain stem to the digestive organs which is why treating the back and neck may be indicated. Digestion also starts in the mouth, so issues with the jaw, often known as temporomandibular joint (TMJ) dysfunction may also be treated.
Breathing is also an important component, not only for optimal digestion, but for overall good health. In addition to being shown good breathing technique, osteopathic treatment can aid good breathing mechanics by addressing any restrictions in the thorax, neck and diaphragm. Additionally you will be advised and encouraged on things you can do yourself at home to help.

Why do people come for Visceral Osteopathic treatment?

While there are many reasons for people seeking out visceral osteopathic treatment, common presentations that are seen at the practice are a range of functional digestive issues, like constipation, bloating, indigestion, sluggishness, small intestinal bacterial overgrowth (SIBO), just to name a few. Other common reasons are general abdominal or 'stomach' pain and discomfort, sometimes known as visceral hypersensitivity. Some people also come because they feel they hold stress and tension in their abdomens which affects their general well-being, no different to some people holding their stress and tension within their neck and shoulders.

Tummy massage for Constipation
Tummy massage for Constipation
Tummy Massage for Constipation & Other Digestive Issues