Osteopathy is a form of complementary and alternative medicine that involves a holistic approach to healthcare, focusing on the relationship between the body's structure and function. While there is limited research specifically on the effects of osteopathy on long COVID symptoms, osteopathic treatment may be helpful for some individuals experiencing persistent symptoms related to COVID-19.
Long COVID is a condition that affects people who have recovered from COVID-19 but continue to experience symptoms such as fatigue, shortness of breath, muscle weakness, joint pain, and brain fog.
Some of the long COVID symptoms that may be addressed with osteopathic treatment include:
Pain: Osteopathic treatment can help relieve pain by restoring proper alignment and function to the body. This can be achieved through techniques such as soft tissue massage, mobilization, and manipulation.
Cough and Breathing difficulties: Osteopathic treatment can help improve breathing by releasing tension in the muscles of the chest and abdomen, improving rib mobility and reducing diaphragmatic restrictions which can help increase lung capacity and improve breathing.
Headache and Fatigue: Osteopathic treatment may help reduce headache and fatigue by improving circulation , increasing vitality in the organs and promoting relaxation by craniosacral treatment.
Brain fog and cognitive difficulties: Osteopathic treatment may help improve cognitive function by addressing restrictions in the cranial bones and membranes, which can affect blood flow to the brain.
Anxiety and depression: Osteopathic treatment can help reduce anxiety and depression by promoting relaxation, improving circulation and reducing pain and other physical symptoms.
Postural support: Patients with long COVID may experience muscle weakness, fatigue, and postural changes due to prolonged bed rest. Osteopathy can help improve postural alignment and strength, which can reduce pain and improve breathing capacity.
Lymphatic drainage: Osteopathic techniques such as lymphatic drainage can help reduce inflammation and improve immune function by eliminating toxins from the body.
Circulatory function: Osteopathy can help improve blood flow, which may be beneficial for patients with long COVID who experience cardiovascular symptoms such as palpitations and chest pain.
It is important to note that osteopathy should not be used as a substitute for medical care for long COVID symptoms. It is always important to consult with a healthcare provider for a proper diagnosis and treatment plan. Osteopathic treatment should be considered as part of a comprehensive approach to managing long COVID symptoms, including appropriate medical care, lifestyle modifications and other supportive therapies.