One thing that I heard about the most after moving to Nova Scotia is how great Osteopathic medicine is. I know there are Osteopathy clinics in Vancouver too, but have never paid much attention. Some of my co-workers have been going there for back pains, digestive problems, and even carpal tunnel syndrome. They swear by the results, so I had to experience it for myself.
For those that don’t know what Osteopathic medicine is, here is a good Wiki article . Basically, osteopathic medicine emphasizes the interrelationship between the structure and function of the body, and recognizes the body’s ability to heal itself, and the role of the osteopathic practitioner is to facilitate that process.
I have uneven hips where one side tilts more than the other, causing my right leg to be longer than my left. It’s been ongoing on for a while now and I think it’s getting worse. My pants have to be hemmed at difference length or one side will drag on the ground, and when I do bridge pose, my hips are not leveled when both my feet are firmly pressed into the ground. Although I’m uncertain how this imbalance affects my body, I am determined to have it “fixed” or find a way to tilt it back. Another reoccurring issue is my upper back. Ever since I snapped it two years ago, it has never been the same, causing strain and pain on my left side.
I called and booked my appointment back in early June with Kingsport Osteopathic Clinic, knowing that there might be a long wait list to get in. I was schedule for July 31st with Kari, and couldn’t wait to have my body fixed up. Wendy, our revenue supervisor told me all about her experience, how the first thing they tell you to do is strip down to your underwear or shorts and cami, and then feel your spine. She warned me again and again to dress appropriately, so when I went in yesterday, I had my sports bra on, a cami on top, and boy shorts under. I wore a flowy dress on top and was ready to take on the appointment!
The drive from Kentville to Kingsport was a very beautiful one, with fields of corn and other crops, leading all the way to the clinic, which was a big house situated right beside the beach, and the view was just amazing. I can’t imagine how good it must be to live and work here, I for one wouldn’t mind at all!
Taking my shoes off and stepping onto the nice cool hardwood floor beneath me, I felt relaxed already. The ceiling was very tall and the house was very airy. It’s such a stark contrast to a normal doctor’s office where I feel stressed just going inside. Kari soon came over and called my name, and my first impression of him was very tall and gentle.
We sat down inside, and he started off by asking me questions regarding whether I’ve been in dramatic accidents, had any injuries or operations. I answered them all and told him about my hips and upper back, and we got to work right away.
To my surprise and relief, he did not ask me to take my dress off. I asked him later and he said in the summer it’s not too bad, it’s the winter when people wear layers of clothes, so most people bring a t-shirt and shorts to change into before the appointment. As I lay down on the bed with my knees bent, he put pillows under my thigh so my lower back is flat on the bed. He then held my ankles and told me he was getting a feel for my entire body.
We chatted during the whole appointment and he said he’s from Finland, and got back 2 days ago from vacationing there. He’s very talkative and pleasant to have a conversation with, and there was never an awkward moment.
After a while, he asked if I had slipped on ice, fell on my tailbone, or missed a step on a stairway. I thought back to winters in Saskatchewan, slippery concrete floors in China, and my horrible experiences with staircases and said yes. He told me that uneven hips are usually due to sudden shocks to the hip area, which makes total sense. I never told him that I fell on my bum as I didn’t even consider that as an injury. He said sometimes we break our tailbone without knowing, and as it heals our hips may rotate at different angles due to the impact. I’m not certain if this is totally fixable, and I’m afraid I forgot to ask him.
But to my comfort my upper back is fixable. He said the vertebra is compressed together in my upper back area, and there isn’t enough room for them to move properly. Basically all of them are moving as a block. He made me do a weird exercise and then I felt something very strange. He said it created more “room” for the upper spine, and then worked with that to move the vertebra into place.
After the appointment was over, I did feel looseness in my left shoulder and soreness in my upper back. He told me to drink lots of water and rest for the next 48 hours, and the soreness is normal as the body try to adjust back to its original state. He said with 2-3 treatments I should be good to go.
I am schedule to go again in about three weeks, and I hope by then there will be a noticeable improvement to my body. So for now I shall withhold my opinion and make them when my treatment is finished.
Have a great long weekend and here are some cute pictures of LSS and Joey napping together : )