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Osteopathy for kids with special needs

Among issues faced by Children with Special Needs is that of restricted mobility and difficulty in digestion. At a five-day workshop at Satya Special School in Puducherry, volunteers from the Etudiants Ostéopathes du Monde (EOM) or the World Osteopath Students Association in France demonstrated how osteopathy, a medical field which is still fairly new in India, can help deal with such ailments.

The EOM consists of current and former students from the Institut Supérieur d’Ostéopathie Paris (ISO Paris) and promotes osteopathy especially in countries where there is little access to it through yearly projects. The association raises funds for the projects through activities and by conducting treatments in France. In the past, the association has worked in countries such as Senegal and Morocco.

The team, consisting of seven osteopaths and one photographer from EOM, has been spending around three weeks in Puducherry and was at the Satya Special School last week.

According to the Medical News Today website, “osteopathy is a form of drug-free non-invasive manual medicine that focuses on total body health by treating and strengthening the musculoskeletal framework, which includes the joints, muscles and spine. Its aim is to positively affect the body’s nervous, circulatory and lymphatic systems."

Osteopathy works on the principle of interconnectedness of organs, tissues and other parts of the body, according to Gabriel Plessier, one of the team members from EOM.

"Osteopathy helps the body be better prepared to receive physical therapy. Children with Special Needs can develop locking of joints and abnormal motility patterns in the small intestine leading to issues with digestion. Osteopathy treats every tissue in the body so it can move at its best capability."

“Children with Special Needs have a physical expression of stress. When the pericardium tissue around the heart is irritated, it leads to a ripple effect for these children, affecting other body parts. In osteopathy, the child is made to relax. Osteopathy also helps relieve facial tightness and postural dysfunction,” said Mr. Plessier.

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