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What is Osteopathy?

Osteopathy was developed in Kirksville, USA by Andrew Taylor Still (18-1918) a practising union doctor in the American Civil War. Three of his children were dying from meningitis, so in an attempt to understand how he could help them, he went back to his medical books. From his understandings of how the body’s structure (anatomy) and function (physiology) are intimately related and co-exist, Osteopathy was born.

What and how does an Osteopath treat?

skeletoninpain1Osteopathy can benefit people of all ages. Neck, back, and other joint pains, along with sports injury can all be lessened by osteopathy if carried out by a qualified practitioner. Due to the inter-relationship of structure and function, rather in the same way as indigestion may occur as a result of sitting hunched over, patients may feel an overall increase in their general well being as a result of treatment.

As a therapeutic discipline osteopathy uses the application of manual, gentle, soft tissue techniques to release tight and irritated muscles, tendons and ligaments with the aim of relaxing them and thereby reducing the irritability in the surrounding tissues. This can result in a reduction of the pain symptoms the patient is experiencing and therefore an increase in their range of movement.

More information regarding osteopathy can be found from the following organisations: The Institute of Osteopathy www.osteopathy.org National Council for Osteopathic Research (NCOR) www.ncor.org.uk and National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) www.nice.org.uk

What to expect from a visit to our Osteopaths:

A full case history will be taken from patients, regarding their presenting complaint and past medical history. Various tests will then be carried out in order to assess the patient’s overall range of movements, generally and specifically, so that an osteopathic diagnosis may be reached. The patient is then informed of the choice of treatment for their case. As Headcorn Natural Health Centre (HNHC) is a multi-disciplinary practice we can also offer suggestions for any other therapies, life style changes, etc that may be considered of personal benefit.


The prices for treatment vary with reduced rates for children. Please call the practice for more details.

Now meet the Team:

All our osteopaths trained at the European School of Osteopathy (ESO) in Maidstone www.eso.ac.uk and work together to offer a wide range of osteopathic techniques suitable for babies to the elderly. Osteopathic treatment is available Monday through to Saturday with some evening appointments. All our osteopaths are registered with the General Osteopathic Council (GOsC) www.osteopathy.org.uk.

Anna Reeve BSc (Hons) DO PGCE – Osteopath

Anna graduated from the ESO in 1988 and has worked in and around Kent as an Osteopath and member of the ESO teaching faculty ever since. She completed a postgraduate course in Classical Osteopathy at The Maidstone College of Osteopathy in 1991 under the late John Wernham and is also a member of The Institute of Classical Osteopathy (ICO) www.classical-osteopathy.org.uk. She enjoys working with all types of patients, appreciating the challenges that each new case may present. The ESO’s course is quite eclectic so the technical approach she uses includes the Body Adjustment, which is articulatory based and Cranial technique which is a gentler approach, more amenable to the treatment of babies and small children or those suffering from an emotional or physical shock, such as after a road traffic accident.

Anna is the instigator and initial founder of HNHC, recognising the benefits of the varying disciplines of Alternative Medicine from an early age. For more information on Anna, please visit her website at www.annareeve.co.uk.

Anna works on Mondays, Wednesday evenings and Thursdays at Headcorn Natural Health Centre.

Jenny Watson RGN RSCN DO M. Ost – Osteopath

Jenny trained as an osteopath after seeking treatment herself for a muscular skeletal condition as an alternative therapy to pain killers. She uses a broad range of treatment approaches including classical, structural, functional, visceral and cranial techniques.

As a Registered General Nurse and Registered Sick Children’s Nurse Jenny adds something extra to HNHC. She has worked as a nurse for 29 years including 3 years in general surgery, 12 years within Paediatrics and 14 years in community nursing. Jenny brings her wealth of nursing experience to her osteopathic practice and maintains her nursing work part time within the community.

Jenny works on Mondays at Headcorn Natural Health Centre.

Alastair Dunbar (M.Ost) РOsteopath 

Alistair is our new Osteopath at the Health Centre and works on Tuesdays and Fridays.

David Howard DO, MAO – Osteomyologist

David treats his patients using the general body adjustment. This classical osteopathic technique involves gentle manipulation of the spinal column and the limbs, dealing with all tissues conjointly with special emphasis only where it is necessary. This method is deliberately routine to aid diagnosis, re-establish the body’s lost rhythm and to adjust fluids and forces throughout the body. Without this preparation any spinal corrections made will be short-lived. Often with this general body adjustment alone the long-term effects are stable and stress resistant. Although termed ‘genera’ this technique is always precise and accurate in execution.

David works on Mondays and Saturdays at Headcorn Natural Health Centre.

What is Osteomyology?

David Howard – More information to follow.