Dr Erin Barnes is passionate about providing quality osteopathic care to people of all ages suffering from a wide variety of ailments such as lower back pain, neck pain and headaches.
Erin holds a Masters in Osteopathic Medicine and a Bachelor of Clinical Science from Southern Cross University. She uses a broad spectrum of osteopathic techniques varying from craniosacral to physical manipulation, and believes that having an understanding in all osteopathic techniques allows her to be able to provide a tailored treatment plan for each individual.
Osteopathy is an in-depth, systematic approach to health that aims to identify the primary cause of pain. It looks at all aspects of the human body such as muscles, joints, ligaments, bones, organs, nerves, circulation as well external factors that may be causing dis-ease. This holistic form of manual therapy also includes patient education and exercise prescription in order to help people understand the what and whys of their situation, so they can identify any perpetuating or causative factors that might be inhibiting their recovery.
Neck pain is a common complaint to osteopathic clinics. It is mostly due to muscle tension, joint strain/degeneration or upper thoracic dysfunction but there are always mainly factors affecting us. The head and neck are the last places that the body can compensate for imbalances from further down the body, this can alter the head position causing pain. This is why poor posture/ergonomics often result in neck and back pain.
Back pain, especially lower back pain is experienced by approximately 80% of our population. It often stems from tight muscles, joint dysfunction and degenerative changes. Muscle weakness can cause opposing muscles to over work to maintain stability, resulting in fatigue and aching often at the end of the day or when we haven’t moved in a while. Altered spinal dynamics can adversely affect neural junction which can lead to referred pain, muscle dysfunction, altered visceral function and central nervous system congestion. Looking at the body as a whole is very important as it leads us to the correct treatment and rehabilitation plan for our patients.
Common Causes of Neck & Back Pain include:
Herniated discs, muscle tension, degeneration of associated joints, referred pain from organs, nerve impingement, trauma (e.g. whiplash), dysfunctional breathing, jaw problems, interrupted circulation, fascial strains, scoliosis, thoracic spinal dysfunction, Headaches, stress, poor posture and ergonomics, leg length discrepancies, core instability and more.
When addressing Neck & Back Pain, an osteopath may consider:
Headaches are defined as any pain steaming from the head. They are classified as having systemic or neurological, musculoskeletal and vascular causes. If you experience headaches regularly try keeping a diary of what happened prior to and them and their symptoms, this can help identify triggers so you can avoid them.
Common causes of headaches:
Muscle tension, jaw problems, teeth grinding, whiplash, infection, joint sprain, dysfunctional breathing, sinus congestion, poor posture, decreased cranial drainage, dehydration, poor desk ergonomics, STRESS and more.
Migraines are caused by arterial spasms within the skull. Migraines can have visual, auditory and gastrointestinal sensitivities as well has head pain. They are described as being with or without aura and are exaggerated by triggers. If you experience migraines regularly try keeping a diary of what happened prior to and the symptoms, this can help identify triggers so you can avoid them.
Common Triggers for migraines include:
Different foods (diary), alcohol – especially red wine, lack of sleep, stress, caffeine, smoking, Hormone changes, menstrual cycles and more.
There can also be a genetic component to migraines.
When addressing Headaches and migraines, an osteopath may consider:
Sports & other injuries often require some form of rehabilitation, Osteopathy can provide an individualised and progressive treatment plan. Recovery is a complex process involving many aspects of the person's body that can affect their ability to recover, osteopathy addresses the injured and surrounding tissues as well as the functionality of the associated joints, blood vessels and connective tissues. Creating balance within a person's system is important to help provide optimal functionality, this will help reduce any possible pain causing factors. Exercise prescription and adaptive treatment can be a part of good rehabilitation plan.
Surgery can be an invasive procedure and has the ability to create new strain patterns within the damaged and surrounding tissues which can restrict fluid flow and excessive swelling (oedema). Osteopathy can use gentle techniques to help encourage drainage of these effected areas.
When addressing rehabilitation, an osteopath may consider:
Shoulder pain can have a big impact on someone’s life and can make the most basic of tasks difficult e.g. carrying the shopping or opening a door. The ‘shoulder girdle’ is made up of 4 major muscles and 2 bones (scapular and clavicle) that work with many other muscles of the chest, arm, back and neck. They all work in synergy with each other to create stability and strength in motion. It is often when this balance is interrupted that pain and dysfunction occurs.
Common Causes of Shoulder Pain include:
Muscle & tendon impingement, bursitis, tendinopathies, trauma, frozen shoulder, referred pain from organs (e.g. gallbladder, lungs & heart), herniated cervical discs, muscle tension, degeneration of associated joints, nerve impingement, repetitive strain injuries, dysfunctional breathing, fascial strains, thoracic spinal dysfunction, rib & clavicle dysfunction, stress, poor posture and ergonomics, cardiac conditions and more.
When addressing Shoulder Pain, an osteopath may consider: