Health Library ~ Family Medicine in Mullica Hill, NJ

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Choosing a Healthcare Provider

With so much information available and so many choices, it's hard to choose a healthcare provider. There are many different kinds of physicians, doctors, nurses, assistants, therapists and counselors.  In fact, new titles seem to pop-up every day. However, there is one type of health care provider that can meet many of your healthcare needs.

Osteopathic physicians (D.O.s) are fully trained and licensed medical practitioners able to prescribe medication and perform surgery. They can be found practicing in any specialty area of medicine, however, 64 percent of the nation's 44,000 D.O.s are primary care physicians. Like M.D.s these D.O.s must complete four years of medical school and a residency in their specialty area. But, D.O.s also receive additional training in preventative care and hands-on manipulation or osteopathic manipulative treatment(OMT).

OMT works in a variety of ways and in many situations. When conscientiously applied, it serves to restore healthy tissue qualities through several mechanisms. These include soft tissue stretching techniques related to deep massage, muscle energy resistance techniques as well as thrusting techniques. This comprehensive approach predates both chiropractic and physical therapy. Hands-on techniques, though, have been used for centuries throughout the world with much success.

There are many benefits to utilizing OMT. One is to increase fluid flow, lymph and venous return to and from tissues. Secondly, it serves to restore normal joint articulatory motion. Thirdly, it can allow muscle and fascial tissue to achieve normal tension and full motion. These goals are accomplished by passive and active techniques.

Osteopathic medicine is a discipline of healthcare that provides for a wide rage of patient needs. It utilizes a health maintenance
philosophy and incorporates "hands-on" techniques to alleviate pain and speed healing. In 1874, Andrew Taylor Still, MD, was frustrated with the accepted standard of medicine during that time. It consisted of poorly trained practitioners and poisonous heavy metal "medicines." As a result of his knowledge of anatomy, an open mind and his medical training, he founded a new branch of medicine called osteopathic medicine.

Osteopathic medicine is a distinctive, hands-on approach that allows the physician to directly diagnose and treat the problem with his or her hands. He or she may also use medical instruments, tests, studies  and exercise to augment your recovery. Osteopathic medicine is used to guide you to your optimal health.

All in all, D.O.s provide the most comprehensive healthcare available today both in a variety of healthcare settings. They utilize a preventative approach and osteopathic manipulative techniques to address the whole patient, not just the specific injry or illness.

For further information, please contact the American Osteopathic
Association at (800)621-1773, 142 East Ontario Street, Chicago, IL 60611
( or your local Osteopathic Physician.

Craig M. Wax, DO, LLC of Mullica Hill, NJ provides information on health, nutrition, family medicine, preventive medicine, wellness, natural treatments, alternative medicine, integrative medicine, osteopathic medicine and just plain common sense.
Craig M. Wax, D.O., L.L.C. © 2014 ~ All Rights Reserved