Rachel Neal Osteopathy

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Registered Osteopath BSc (Hons) Ost Med DO ND

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Cramps and Muscle Spasms

Posted on Jul 28 by

Cramps and muscle spasms are common annoyances, but for some people they are frequent or persistent, and require a bit of help to manage them. What is a Cramp? Muscle cramps are an involuntary contraction of part, or all of a muscle. Sometimes multiple muscles within a group are affected. From the outside, a cramp feels like a muscle knot. Cramps can last for a few minutes in some cases, but for most people they only last a few seconds and don’t recur very frequently. Unfortunately, there is still a lot we don’t know about the root causes of cramps. Research in the area is limited, although some old theories have been disregarded recently. Who is Most Affected by Cramps? Some conditions appear to predispose a person to cramping: COPDpeople on dialysis for late stage kidney diseaseALSdiabetesfibromyalgia In some cases the cramping is related more to the medication prescribed than the conditions themselves- your doctor may be able to offer you an alternative. Athletes Despite popular belief, dehydration or electrolyte imbalance are not closely linked to cramps among athletes....


Circulation Issues

Posted on Jun 28 by

Circulation is a bit of a vague term, but it is considered an area that osteopaths may be able to help with. This post will focus on two specific aspects of circulation. Post Injury Swelling The more simple of the two is post-injury swelling. This may appear alongside bruising for injuries such as ligament sprains. Although your first reaction might be to try and reduce the swelling as much as possible, this is no longer recommended, because the swelling serves a purpose. When fluid builds up around an injury, it is full of white blood cells and nutrients needed for repair. The white blood cells help to fight infection and clear dead tissue, so we definitely want them present. A problem arises if the fluid sits there for too long without refreshing. It needs to return to circulation to take away the dead tissue and waste products, leaving space for new fresh fluid. A cool compress can help to take the edge off a post-injury swelling, but this should be limited to no more than 10 minutes per hour....



Posted on May 28 by

Fibromyalgia is a poorly understood chronic pain condition. It is associated with widespread aches and pains, poor sleep and cognitive function, fatigue, and muscular tenderness. Diagnosis of Fibromyalgia Diagnosing the condition can be difficult, as there are no tests to identify it directly. Like IBS, this is a functional condition, as opposed to structural, which means that imaging, biopsies, and blood tests will not show markers for the condition. Therefore, diagnosis is more about ruling out other similarly presenting conditions, such as: rheumatoid arthritis and other rheumatological conditionschronic fatigue or MEmultiple sclerosis (MS) Symptoms Previously, diagnosis was based on a set list of tender points across the body. Diagnostic criteria is now more focused on: tenderness on both sides of the body, above and below the waistfeeling fatigued, and waking up unrefresheddifficulty concentrating (“fibro fog”)symptoms that last for at least 3 months Symptoms may wax and wane, but generally they will be present to some degree throughout. Severity of symptoms form part of the diagnostic criteria, and a diagnosis can be made whether a person’s experience is mild or...