Osteopathy for Teenagers

The adolescent years are a great time of change on many levels including physical, hormonal, social and emotional. Osteopathy can assist with common injuries and muscle strains associated with your teenager’s favourite sport or dance activities and can also address postural problems related to increased study load or heavy back packs to set your teen up for fewer musculoskeletal problems later in life.

Our teenager may be introduced to braces which are great for assisting proper dental alignment but the increased pressure and strain can sometimes cause jaw pain, digestive upsets, backaches, neck strain and headaches. Osteopathy can help by addressing the ligaments, fascia, muscles and bones of the neck, jaw and shoulders to help alleviate the pain associated with the changes the body makes to accommodate new braces or if braces are tightened/adjusted.

Stress in another factor that is prevalent in our teenager’s lives – balancing part time work and sports with increased study load, learning to drive, depression due to hormonal changes and social pressures all take their toll. Osteopathy can help by reducing the effects of increased sympathetic tone (the flight and fight response of your nervous system) and address musculoskeletal restrictions to ensure an adolescent’s body is functioning optimally to promote relaxation and the body’s natural coping mechanisms.

You may have noticed that your teenager seems to have shot up almost instantly – overnight. You are not imagining things – rapid growth is common and can lead to “growing pains” as your teen’s ligaments and muscles undergo increased strain in an effort to keep up with growing bones. Osteopathy can help by stretching and releasing tight ligaments and muscles to reduce the pain associated with sudden growth spurts.

Moeckel, E & Mitha, N. (2008) Textbook of Paediatric Osteopathy Churchill Livingstone (98-9)

Pellisé, F., Balagué, F., Rajmil, L., Cedraschi, C., Aguirre, M., Fontecha, C. G., … & Ferrer, M. (2009). Prevalence of low back pain and its effect on health-related quality of life in adolescents. Archives of pediatrics & adolescent medicine, 163(1), 65-71.

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