Does health insurance cover osteopathy consultations?
Osteopathy is an alternative medicine therapy. In this therapy, the osteopath detects and prevents health complications by massaging and stretching the patient’s muscles, tissues and joints.
Through a holistic view of the body, osteopathy applies non-invasive treatments and techniques where the main thing is that both the muscles, which are attached to the tissues and these in turn to the bones, work in coordination. Many people choose this type of professional to treat their ailments, as an alternative to physiotherapy or other medical specialties. In this article we talk about osteopathy and clarify when health insurance covers osteopathy consultations.
What are the benefits of osteopathy?
There is a long list of ailments that can be treated with osteopathy. The most common are pain in the back, shoulders or neck, discomfort caused during pregnancy or sports injuries.
There is evidence that the techniques carried out by the osteopath can be very beneficial, especially back pain, especially at the lumbar level.
Osteopaths have treated migraine, painful menstruation and depressive problems with relative success, but there is no conclusive evidence that osteopathy is still considered an effective treatment for this type of ailment.
On the other hand, osteopathy has been very effective in treating sprains, contractures, loss of sensitivity in arms or legs, cases of tendinitis and ailments caused by scoliosis or poor posture.
Irritable colon, some hernias, constipation and gastritis are gastroenterological ailments where osteopathy has proven to be effective.
Other conditions where the success of osteopathy has been verified have been incontinence, cystitis, menopausal disorders, amenorrhea, asthma and bronchitis.
How does an osteopath work?
Basically it is about massages in the affected areas to increase the movement of the joints, the relief of muscular tension and thus improve the blood supply to the tissues.
The objective of osteopathy is to maintain the correct performance of the body systems, the general health of the patient and to strengthen the bone and muscle structure.
Osteopaths are also trained to offer advice on maintaining correct posture, rehabilitating injuries through exercises that help speed recovery, and how to avoid potential relapses.
Osteopathy is capable of treating mental imbalances considered mild; such as sleep disorders, fatigue, insomnia, general tiredness, anxiety and of course the stress that is reflected in the body’s tensions.
Alternatives and incompatibilities
It is always advisable to rule out some health conditions that can present similar symptoms and in some cases the patient should be referred to other specialists who do more specific studies such as X-rays, followed by MRIs and a thorough blood test.
Arthritis, which is a painful and complex condition to treat, sometimes requires medication to quell the inflammation; and, in severe cases, surgical intervention.
Similarly, there are situations in which the techniques are not adequate to treat the condition. These can cause injury to sensitive areas such as the spine. In these specific cases, patients need to be attended by a specialist who can carry out more precise diagnoses.
Osteoporosis, chronic arthritis, fractures, cancer, hemophilia or blood coagulation conditions should only be treated by specialists in the field, since these are areas completely removed from osteopathy.
Osteopathy in health insurance
Health insurance usually includes osteopathy services, just as it includes physiotherapy in its coverage. The point is that, as with other medical specialties, the specialist you are looking for may not be included among those who have an agreement with your insurance, in the case of medical insurance.
If what you have is reimbursement insurance, make sure you go to a specialist registered in the Register of Osteopaths in Spain. In addition, it is highly recommended that the osteopath you go to is also a physiotherapist or doctor; since osteopathy, being an alternative medicine, is not regulated. If you do not go to an osteopath backed by a medical degree and who is properly registered, your health insurance may not cover these services.
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