Beech Street Health Centre | Halifax, Nova Scotia
Osteopathy Physiotherapy Acupuncture Massage Speech Language Therapy in Halifax, NS

What is Osteopathy

What is Osteopathy?

Osteopathy is a manual therapy concerned with movement. Therapists use their hands to assess the body for regions that move well and are in good health and also areas where movement is reduced and health may be compromised. Osteopathic therapists assess and treat the body as a whole, looking at movement expressed in the joints, the soft tissues such as muscles and ligaments, the bones, the organs, and the fluids of the body such as blood and lymph.

Osteopathic therapists study in detail the anatomy and physiology of the body, developing an understanding of how the body is structured and how it functions. One of the central principles of osteopathy is that if the body is well aligned and able to move as designed to move, a person will experience better health. However, if the body has structural problems (for example, some of the joints of the body are not moving well because of an old or recent injury) the body will not be able to function normally until the structural problem has been corrected. When a part of the body is not able to move well, circulation to the area is reduced and the local tissue is not well nourished; the circulatory system cannot detoxify the local tissue optimally; the nervous system becomes imbalanced; and pain, illness and eventually disease may result. By working to ensure the body is well-aligned and can express normal movement, the osteopathic therapist helps to create conditions for prevention of illness and disease and for the experience of long-term vitality and good health.

What Conditions are Commonly Treated using Osteopathy?

Osteopathy is used for treatment of the whole body and can be a beneficial form of therapy for most conditions a patient experiences. Osteopathic treatment can be helpful to support recovery and healing from injuries, the treatment of pain, and the body’s natural tendency to move toward balance even when affected by illness and disease. Osteopathic therapists recognize that multiple factors (physical, psychological, nutritional, etc..) influence many health problems. The therapists at Beech Street Health Centre network with an extended health care team of physicians, dentists, orthodontists, psychologists, naturopaths and other health care practitioners, when appropriate, to ensure patients receive support for all elements of health.

Cranial Osteopathy

Cranial Osteopathy uses very gentle pressure to encourage the release of stresses from body. It is referred to as cranial osteopathy because in most cases the treatment is focused on the head, although other parts of the body such as the spine and tailbone can also be involved in the treatment.

A cranial osteopath can feel the very small movements of the body called involuntary motion. To the osteopath, this feels like a gentle expansion and contraction of all the tissues while performing the treatment. This involuntary motion can be easily disturbed by any form of trauma, such as a difficult birth, a car accident, knocks and falls and general illness. Gradually the body may accumulate these strains to the point that symptoms start to show.

Cranial Osteopathy is suitable for many conditions. Many of us have been affected by some sort of physical trauma during our life. We may have not felt any strain at first, but gradually, the accumulation of strains may start to show. These strains can lead not only to pain in your joints and muscles but can affect your internal organs.

Adults can benefit from cranial osteopathy if experiencing head and face pain, stress, malaise, fatigue and general ill health. Cranial osteopathy is suitable for all ages, as it is an extremely gentle treatment. In babies, it is very effective for treating the effects of a difficult birth, irritability, feeding difficulties and improper sleeping patterns.

Feel free to contact us with any questions using our contact form or by calling us at (902) 406-7200.

Cranial Sacral Therapy

Cranial Sacral Therapy (CST), often referred to as Craniosacral Therapy, is an treatment most commonly used by Osteopaths. It is used to relieve compression in the head, sacrum, and spinal bones by using gentle pressure on the head, neck, and back to relieve the stress and pain caused by compression.

Through gentle manipulation of the bones in the skull, spine and pelvis, the flow of cerebrospinal fluid in the central nervous system can be normalized by removing blockages. This ultimately enhances the body’s ability to heal itself.

While CTS is most commonly used in Osteopathy, It can also be integrated into Physiotherapy and Massage Therapy, either as part of your treatment plan or the sole purpose of your visit. Depending on your symptoms, 3-10 sessions could be all you need. A healthcare professional at Beech Street Health Centre will help determine what is best for you.

Conditions Commonly Treated With Cranial Secral Therapy:

  • Migraines and Headaches

  • Constipation

  • Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)

  • Disturbed sleep cycles and Insomnia

  • Scoliosis

  • Sinus infections

  • Neck pain

  • Fibromyalgia

  • Recurrent ear infections or colic in infants

  • TMJ

  • Trauma recovery, including trauma from whiplash

  • Mood disorders like Anxiety or Depression

  • Difficult pregnancies

Our Osteopathy Team

Heather Stone, Osteopath

Heather is an Osteopath and Registered Massage Therapist. She graduated from the Collège d'Études Ostéopathiques where she completed a 5 year osteopathy program plus a thesis relating to malocclusion in children. She also graduated with a degree in Osteopathy from the British College of Osteopathic Medicine where her research involved bruxism (jaw clenching). read more >

Brendon Smith, Osteopath

Brendon is an Osteopath and Registered Massage Therapist. He graduated from the Collège d'Études Ostéopathiques - Halifax Campus where he completed a 5 year osteopathy program plus a thesis relating to osteoarticular adjustments. read more > 


Conditions Commonly Treated using Osteopathy

Neck pain
Back pain
Menstrual pain
Headaches and Migraines
Jaw pain (TMJ disorder)
Bursitis and Tendinitis
Joint Pain and Arthritis
Motor Vehicle Accident related pain
Sports Injury related pain
Over-Use / Repetitive Strain Injury related pain

Systemic Problems:
Neurological syndromes
Digestive disorders
Genitourinary problems
Chronic infectious disease
Circulatory problems

Ear, Nose and Throat Problems:
Chronic ear infections
Recurrent sore throats
Frequent colds
Sinusitis (Sinus infection/inflammation)
Tinnitus (Noise or ringing in the ear)

Respiratory Illness:

Pregnancy Issues:
Back pain and Sciatica
Digestive upset
Edema (Swelling)

Children’s Issues:
Spitting up
Sucking difficulty
Delayed development
Birth trauma
Otitis media (Ear infections)