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The founding of the Practice
Honiton Osteopathic Centre, ‘The Douglas-Mort Practice’ was founded in 1982 by David and Rowan Douglas-Mort; it was to our knowledge the very first Osteopathic practice to bring the benefits of Cranial Osteopathy to Devon and the West Country. For the last 28yrs the centre has been situated in the High St premises the ‘Manor House’, a grade 2 listed building which amongst other uses, was formally an old coaching inn on the route to London.
Prior to opening Honiton Osteopathic Centre ‘The Douglas-Mort Practice’ functioned in South West Wales for several years before moving to Devon. The West Country is an area that we both like and have strong family connections with.
Over the years we have continued to develop the Douglas-Mort Practice and as Sutherland Practitioners are pleased to be able to offer a Cranio-sacral therapy approach for people of all ages. Our patients have said that they have found our approach to be very gentle and have found it in their opinion to be particularly suitable for many problems too numerous to list here.
Our practice ethos here at ‘The Douglas-Mort Practice’ has grown and matured in its individual flavour over our 44 years as practitioners, as our skills and understanding of the ‘healing arts’ has developed. We always as ever strive to extend the very best standard of clinical care, comfort, courtesy and honesty to all our patients. We undertake research, upgrade our skill and knowledge base regularly, and have standards which are high and unapologetically old fashioned. We always strive to prioritise the needs of our ongoing patients, but we are always pleased to take on new patients in order to offer those in need the benefits of our approach to treatment.
In 2005 Honiton Osteopathic centre took part in some interesting externally supervised research including a practice audit, an experiment on palpation, research into animal treatment, and several formalised case studies. We hope to publish these at some point and continue to develop further projects in this area subject to financial constraints.
Funding within the field of hands on research is very hard to obtain as by it’s very nature the cranio-sacral approach is independent of the drug industry and therefore does not attract large development grants from government or industry. Consequently such research has to be independently funded with almost all of it financed by practitioners themselves, however resources are desperately lacking. Without the additional funding for research needed to analyse scientifically that the wide range of ailments that our patients have told us that Sutherland therapy has helped them with is proven, we will not be able to keep abreast of the increasing demands for ‘evidence based’ medicine.
Currently in progress
As part of our professional development we extend our study of psychology and the behavioural sciences, and continually update our own clinical knowledge and skills. We are currently involved in teaching all aspects of Cranial Osteopathy including paediatrics, and in post-graduate course development within the profession. In 2009 we started to teach postgraduate students Equine Cranial Osteopathy, the first module was held in the spring, and more will be scheduled for next year. Currently we are writing a text book on this subject.
The emphasis in our work is always on making treatment as effective, comfortable and acceptable for the patient as possible, and we are prepared to investigate as many angles as needed to achieve this!
Cranio-sacral treatment today in our practice
We aim to make your treatment as effective, comfortable and relaxing as possible. To do we so use the most gentle and least traumatic treatment approaches possible, concentrating on ‘release’ type techniques, and ‘cranial’ techniques to assist your body back to normal. Indeed many patients feel so relaxed that they often doze off during treatment!
All of the approaches and techniques originally developed by Sutherland are in use today by us here in our practice. We believe that it is vitally important to enhance the natural re-establishment of the underlying deep tissue function or ‘involuntary motion’ in a persons body as a prerequisite of good health. Once the integrity of deep tissue function is restored, and coordinated with this process this assists the return of normal function to the joints, muscles, nerves and organs of the body. Working through the connective tissues, we use the advanced and gentle techniques of Dr Sutherland, particularly the ‘Balanced Membranous Tension’ techniques, which are designed to release abnormal restrictions, compressions and stresses, and guide the structures of the body back to a more comfortable functional relationship.
The use of these gentle, sustained, focused and guiding readjustment techniques, we believe allows the body to accept and retain the corrective processes more comfortably. [Unlike the more familiar violent ‘crunching’ H.V.T. adjustment techniques, which may fail to address the chronic contractured ‘trouble spots’ satisfactorily, and have a potential to add additional increments of trauma to the already traumatised body structure.] Our patients have said that this approach to treatment has enabled them to feel safe and comfortable and relaxed during their treatment, which they have found to be highly effective at relieving symptoms for all, irrespective of age, sex, size, state of health etc.