Babies & Children2021-10-22T16:12:58+01:00

Babies & Children

From new-born babies to toddlers and teenagers, the natural process of our treatment finds ways of being helpful for all. Using extremely gentle touch, we allow the body’s own self-corrective abilities and its natural elasticity to restore the health of the child.

Why mothers and their children to come and see us

There are many reasons why parents bring us their children, but principally it is because they sense something is not right. They bring babies, for a check-up, or distressed, with physical and emotional issues unresolved from their birth or their position in the womb; toddlers that may only just be beginning to show the strains from their birth experience or may have had an accident or head injury, and teenagers who are starting to get headaches or migraines or are feeling the strains of changing hormones, school pressure or family discord. Children with special needs frequently visit us, they often experience the stresses and changes of life more keenly and their disability is no barrier to treatment.

Mothers themselves also visit us; during the pregnancy with back or pelvic problems, perhaps reflux from the position of the baby, or sometimes just to help them relax. Post-Nataly they visit to help recover after birth, for strains caused by breast feeding or to recover from so many sleepless nights.

There are many other reasons why mothers and children visit us, and we are always happy to discuss the possibilities of Osteopathic treatment.  See a selection of our patients below!

Treating babies

Birth is the likely to be the most stressful journey of our life. The head is hugely compressed with the soft mobile bones of the skull naturally overlapping, accommodating the journey through the birth canal. It is always worth looking at how your baby has responded to this journey.

The distortions and compressions usually right themselves after birth, assisted by the baby’s full range of breathing, sucking, crying and yawning. Difficulties in labour, though, such as a prolonged or fast birth, a Ventouse or Forceps delivery, or an Emergency Caesarean, for example, can impact this healing process, particularly when the baby has been distressed, and leave the baby struggling to be comfortable.

This unresolved imprint may result in Colic or Reflux. There may be lots of wind and explosive stools, gurgling sounds, a bloated stomach, they may be arching their back, crying inconsolably, squirming all the time, or be uncomfortable at night and struggle to get to sleep or stay asleep. It can be very distressing for the parents and extend way beyond the suggested 3 months

When we examine these babies, we usually find retained moulding of their heads and tense diaphragms. Their compressions may affect the nerves to the stomach, and their brains and digestions may be over stimulated due to their discomfort or the stress that they have been through.

We like to treat these infants and we believe we can help them. Not only from our own experience and the feedback of mothers, but research also has shown (Hayden.C. and Mullinger B. 2006) that babies with colic having Osteopathic treatment cry less and show a significant improvement to hours of restful sleep.

Working with children

Young children come to us with all kinds of childhood conditions, they move around, of course, but this doesn’t stop us from working on them, we have a range of toys and books to occupy them and are experienced in how best to make the most of any situation.

They suffer from blocked ears, constipation, restlessness, delays in their development, or problems with concentration.  They may have the remnants of their birth trauma, they may have knocked their heads or broken a limb.  It may be that they are struggling with nursery or school, there may be tension at home.

We gently work to maximise the health of the child and their ability to respond to their challenges, emotionally and physically. Helping the structure overcome its restrictions and restoring adaptability to the tissues.  They usually respond very quickly to our treatment.

Why bring a teenager

The teenage years are characterised by accelerated growth in all areas of life.  Not only do they rapidly get taller and start to fill out, but their brains suddenly start to generate millions more connections, rapidly changing their perceptions of the world.  At the same time their social lives become more complicated as well as more important and the pressure of school life, exams and homework combine to be, at times, overwhelming.

They get headaches, back ache from carrying bags or postural changes from sudden growth, sports injuries, head injuries, even concussion. They often have an inability to relax, pressure from every area of their lives including social media can lead to huge stress, emotionally this is a challenging time.

It is important to listen to our teenagers, we need to be sensitive to the changes they are experiencing, not trying to fix them, but supporting them on their journey into adulthood.  The Osteopathic work is suited to this holistic approach, supporting their health, relaxing their body, and allowing them to heal in the direction they want.

Pregnancy

Pregnancy should make the health bloom, but this is not every mother’s experience; exhaustion and back pain are common responses to the changing hormones and physical shape. During the first trimester, for many mothers, their underlying exhaustion is exacerbated by the changing hormones, this is an opportunity to recharge their batteries and prepare for being a mother.

As the body shape changes, and the hormone Relaxin loosens the ligaments, postural issues can occur, leading to back pain, sciatica or problems with the Symphysis Pubis at the front of the pelvis. These can be made worse by poor posture, being sat in front of a computer, or lifting something heavy.

During the third Trimester, if not corrected, these problems can be further exacerbated by the increasing size of the baby, which starts to put a strain on not just the muscles of the back and stomach but the pelvic floor and diaphragm. The changes in posture can even lead to neck discomfort.

We work and give advice at every stage of pregnancy to keep mothers comfortable, prepare them for labour and keep their child safe. We can also help them following birth to heal and return their bodies to their pre-pregnant state.

What our customers say

I first came to see Ben with symptoms diagnosed as ME that I had been struggling with for 2 years. Very quickly these symptoms became controllable and within a few months most had been eliminated. I am ever so grateful for Ben’s caring and understanding yet informative approach to Cranial Osteopathy. It really has been life changing and I would thoroughly recommend him to everyone.

Eleanor Rowbotham

I have benefitted from treatments myself, particularly at times of physical or emotional stress. Most of these have been to do with maintaining health, but I also got rapidly better after a prompt treatment following a fall down some stairs. I am always left feeling more balanced, breathing better and able to cope. I have recommended Phil to those with and without children for a variety of different reasons.

SL – Bourne End

My back has gone from strength to strength and I have even been able to take up gardening, something I never imagined my back could endure. I have introduced a number of friends to Ben for back and hip issues and they are all delighted by the results of his treatments. We all have a huge respect for Ben’s ability as a Cranial Osteopath as well as really appreciating him as a wonderful and kind person.

MG – Oxon

We “found” Phil when my second son was an intolerable, crying baby and I was at my wits end. I was undecided as to whether Phil offered help to my son or a placebo to me but was happy that things were improving.   I returned when a subsequent pregnancy left me barely able to walk. I remember staggering into his consulting room and pretty much skipping out. Following this I felt ready to explore how cranial osteopathy could help in managing my family’s well-being.

Heather Ashby-Rose

I have a long history of back pain with severe congenital scoliosis and I have sought out the very best Cranial Osteopaths in London and Bath. I was anxious when I had to move to Oxfordshire but I was amazed and delighted to find Ben Colyer. Ben is one of the best Cranial Osteopaths I have ever been lucky enough to work with.

Madeleine

Ben uses gentle techniques and is always calm and positive. He has treated me during and post-pregnancies and also had sessions with my babies and now children. We have all noticed great improvements and the children very feel comfortable going to the practice. Over the years, I have recommended Ben to a number of people who have mentioned benefiting from his treatments. We are lucky to have him and the practice in Prestwood!

Karine Lipinski

Phil has such breadth and depth of knowledge, I find many of his treatments so growthful – not just physically, as you might expect, but emotionally and spiritually too. His understanding and implementation of the holistic approach for his patients is something I don’t receive anywhere else! Phil has been a tremendous support over the years and I trust him implicitly as he helps me navigate this long and rocky road to good health!

Zoe LLoyd

Following a riding accident which resulted in severe whiplash, I found Ben and was intrigued by this gentle form of treatment, in particular that there is no “pulling and pushing”! After only two treatments, which were completely non-invasive, the pain and stiffness in my neck was hugely improved and I had far more movement than I thought possible.  Ben also worked on realigning my shoulders and pelvis, after which I noticed when riding my horse that I could lengthen my right stirrup by a hole.  I would highly recommend Ben’s gentle and skilled treatment to anyone.”

Martina

I have benefitted from treatment myself, particularly at times of physical or emotional stress. Most of these have been to do with maintaining health, but I also got rapidly better after a prompt treatment following a fall down some stairs. I am always left feeling more balanced, breathing better and able to cope. I have recommended Phil to those with and without children for a variety of different reasons.

Sue Lack

My twins were born naturally, the first with venteuse and the second with forceps.  Cranial osteopathy was recommended to relieve any pressure the girls had experienced from the lengthy labour and birth.  The results were incredible.  Asha has been struggling to breast feed and after a single treatment she was able to widen her jaw making breast feeding much easier for her and more comfortable for me.

Vicki

Ben is a skilled and intuitive osteopath with a sensitive approach to his clients and a focussed approach to his work.  I am amazed at how much he can perceive through his light touch treatment and how effective the results can be.  Asha now tells me when she wants to see Ben because she has ‘hurt legs or feet’.

Vicki

We “found” Phil when my second son was an intolerable, crying baby and I was at my wits end. I was undecided as to whether Phil offered help to my son or a placebo to me but was happy that things were improving.   I returned when a subsequent pregnancy left me barely able to walk. I remember staggering into his consulting room and pretty much skipping out. Following this I felt ready to explore how cranial osteopathy could help in managing my family’s well-being.

H A-R Beaconsfield

Meet Your Practitioners

Philip Allen

BA (Hons) ND DO MSCCO; (Clinic Principal)

Philip qualified from the British college of Osteopathy and Naturopathy in 1993 and is also a qualified Naturopath. He has worked with the gentle technique, known as ‘Cranial Osteopathy’ or ‘Biodynamic Osteopathy’ for over 25 years, completing extensive post graduate study. His approach is holistic, looking at the many factors in a person’s life that influence their health. He enjoys treating babies and children as well as the aches and pains of adult life and is particularly interested in complex or chronic health problems and their relation to the physical structure.

Ben Colyer

BSc (Hons) Ost DPO MSTAT

With more than 15 years’ of wide-ranging experience, Ben’s postgraduate studies in Cranial, Biodynamic and Paediatric Osteopathy (at the Osteopathic Centre for Children), have been a tremendous asset to our Osteopathic team in Prestwood. He concentrates on the gentler work of Cranial Osteopathy bringing a great deal of skill and sensitivity to his treatment of everyone, from babies and children to adults and the elderly. His work is enhanced by his understanding Alexander Technique, which he also practices and teaches at the college in Reading.

Sylvester Laciok

M Ost

Sylvester has a Masters degree from the University College of Osteopathy. He practices the Classical Osteopathic approach of the whole body routine in his treatments. This approach ensures that nothing is missed and the structural and functional activities of the body are coordinated in a rhythmic and balanced way. He has a strong belief in the interrelation of mind, body and context and uses this very successfully in his practice. Sylvester brings a broad range of skills to his practice having also worked in the NHS for over twelve years.

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