Mother & Baby

To obtain good results, we must blend ourselves with and travel in harmony with Nature’s truths

Philosophy and Mechanical Principles of Osteopathy

Cranial Osteopathy

People often wonder why I treat infants. 

Being born isn’t easy! Long labours and difficult deliveries can contribute to strains in an infant’s body as they are compressed, twisted or stuck in one position for extended periods of time. Orientation in utero, such as transverse lie, can also create tensions that persist post delivery.

A study of more than one thousand infants, conducted by the Osteopathic Centre for Children in San Diego (Frymann, 1966), found approximately 10% of infants had significant distortions in shape and mobility of the tissues in their head. Eighty percent showed moderate strains and only 10% had no significant structural dysfunctions. Tensions along the spine, pelvis and extremities are frequent findings too.

Sometimes these tensions are apparent – misshapen heads or banana-shaped bodies; often they are more subtle – diaphragm or pelvic mobility restrictions. Of course, our bodies are designed to deal with this. Suckling, yawning and crying all help ease strains in the cranial membranes and correct the alignment of the bones. Kicking helps mobilize the pelvis and stimulate sluggish bowels. However, too much tension can be difficult to overcome and present as difficulty latching or sucking, irritability, poor sleep, frequent spitting up, gassiness or constipation. Early intervention can help relieve discomfort and remove the obstacles to healthy self-correction throughout the entire body.

What are some signs your baby could benefit from osteopathic treatment?

Favouring one side for feeding
Always turning head to the same side while lying down
Disliking touch of the head or neck
Arching backward
Tugging or poking at an eye or ear
Frequent inconsolable crying
Difficulty sleeping

Since babies’ skeletons are softer than an adult’s we use gentler techniques such as cranial osteopathy.  Cranial techniques are safe, gentle, and non-manipulative. They are often used when treating young children and newborn infants.  This gentle type of manipulation could help soothe and relax your baby.

Osteopathic techniques are suitable for children at all stages of development.  If you’re not sure whether we can help you and your child, or if you want to ask questions about cranial osteopathy for your baby, call us on 01484 517808. All calls are free with no obligation to book an appointment .

In addition to the above we often work with local health visitors and midwives, and also alongside the local lactation consultants to give postural advice related to breastfeeding.

Cranial Osteopathy

Cranial Osteopathy for Babies and Children

It is a common belief that babies and children should have no stresses or strains in their bodies, because they are 'so young'. The reality is very different. Birth is one of the most stressful events of our lives. The baby is subjected to enormous forces, as the uterus pushes to expel the baby against the natural resistance of the birth canal. The baby has to turn and twist as it squeezes through the bony pelvis, on its short but highly stimulating and potentially stressful journey.

Cranial osteopathic treatment
Osteopathic treatment using the cranial approach is gentle, safe and effective for babies and children. Very specific, skilled, light pressure is applied where necessary to assist the natural ability of the body to release stresses and tensions.

Could there be any adverse reactions?
Reactions to treatment are variable, often the baby or child is very relaxed afterwards and sleeps well. Others have a burst of energy after treatment, usually followed by a good nights sleep.
Occasionally children are unsettled after treatment. This is a temporary situation, and usually clears within 24-48 hours.

Osteopaths will always ensure that patients and their babies and children seek appropriate medical advice and treatment alongside any osteopathic treatment, and will refer patients back to their GP if a problem is not suitable for osteopathic treatment.