Osteopathic care of the older patient
Many older Australians mistakenly believe that the effect of ageing on their body’s joints is untreatable and inevitable. You don’t have to live a lesser life because of pain. Osteopaths are trained to assess and treat a wide range of musculoskeletal conditions affecting older people.
The aches and pains of ageing
As we age, our bodies lose elasticity, increasing the chance of injuring the soft tissues and bony structures. The body also loses some of its ability to recover from injuries or strains. Ageing can cause:
- Poor balance
- General stiffness
- Back, neck and arm pain
- Hip and knee pain and stiffness
- Arthritis and joint swelling
Keeping mobile and active is the key to your health, happiness and independence. It can also help to minimise the risk of falls, which can have serious consequences for your future health.
The aim of osteopathic management is to help reduce further joint wear and tear to keep you active and independent. Osteopaths may offer treatment and advice to help improve your mobility, circulation and balance, to help reduce joint stiffness and keep you doing the things you love. This includes:
- Manual therapy
- Advice on exercises you can do at home to keep you stronger and more flexible
- Advice on nutrition
- Guidance about outdoor exercising such as a daily walk to keep your circulation healthy and maintain muscle tone
- Advice on gentle stretches to help maintain joint and muscle flexibility and assist in preventing injuries
- Information about activities such as Tai Chi, yoga or gym-based training, which can maximise your balance and strength
- Advice on how to prevent falls
Osteopaths consider the whole-person when managing your healthcare. In order to do this effectively, they may also work with other health practitioners to ensure all aspects of your general health and wellbeing are cared for.
Chronic Disease Management program
With a referral from a GP, you may be able to access free or subsidised treatment for a range of chronic conditions under the Chronic Disease Management program. There is no set list of eligible conditions covered by this program, but a chronic condition is one that has been (or is likely to be) present for six months or longer and this includes various musculoskeletal conditions that become more common as we get older.Find out more