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Visceral therapy

What is visceral manipulation therapy?

Visceral manipulation is a gentle, hands-on manual therapy used to help your internal organs (viscera) glide smoothly within your body. Your osteopath can use this technique to treat abdominal pain, gastroesophageal reflux, constipation, cramps, indigestion, and much more. 

Your internal organs are surrounded by connective tissue that holds them in place in the body. Healthy connective tissue should move easily to allow organs to slide on each other when you rotate or flex your torso, or when you just breath.

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Connective tissue should be loose enough to allow your stomach to expand when you eat, your lungs to open and accept air, your intestines to constrict and relax to move waste to your colon.

Congested or inflamed connective tissue impedes these small but significant movements. This creates visceral discomfort and dysfunction and can lead to restricted movement and pain in other parts of the body. That can generate problems and pain also in the structural part of our body.

Scar Tissue and Adhesions in the Body

Your thoracic and abdominal viscera control your breathing, digestion, immune system, reproductive system, and hormonal response. The human body is a complex system with many interconnected subsystems, all working together to help you thrive. When one of those systems is compromised in any way, the body compensates.

Inflammation from illness or trauma can thicken and tighten the fascial network that supports nearby organs. If an organ gets shifted due to a specific trauma, such as a fall, it may get “stuck,” creating restrictions in your movement and dysfunction in the organ.

Surgeries – including c-sections, side effects from medication, or chemotherapy can also create adhesions in the viscera. As a surgical scar heals, the connective tissue supporting the skin can start to bind with deeper tissues, creating a pattern of restriction that can extend far beyond the original incision.

How does visceral manipulation work?

To perform visceral manipulation, your osteopath will do an assessment and determine if restrictions in your abdominal or thoracic viscera may be contributing to your discomfort. A all series of tests are done to understand if and where the restrictions are present.

Your osteopath can then use specific techniques to mobilize the tissue to create more efficient function throughout the body. 

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