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Osteopathy for Children and Babies

Correcting strains early on in life can allow your child to reach and express their full potential as an adult. Cranial osteopathy is most recognised for the treatment of babies and young children due to it’s gentle approach. Our osteopaths can help to improve and restore the mobility of the cranial bones.

Osteopathy for Children

We treat a wide range of symptoms and conditions in children from birth onwards, so please feel free to contact us about any condition your child may have.

Since children are very delicate compared to adults, we adapt our treatment approach to suit the needs of the young body. Our friendly approach and comfortable surroundings help to ensure that both you and your child can feel relaxed about visiting us and confident of achieving the best possible results


How do I know if my baby or child needs an osteopath?

Osteopathy for babies is often sought when parents notice persistent issues that may be related to musculoskeletal or cranial imbalances. If you’re considering osteopathy for your baby, be attentive to the following signs and symptoms that may indicate the need for treatment:


  • Prolonged periods of inconsolable crying
  • Difficulty soothing the baby
  • Crying that sounds different

Head shape irregularities

  • Flat spots or asymmetry in the baby’s head shape
  • Persistent moulding from the birthing process


  • Excessive gas or bloating
  • Issues with bowel movements
  • Reflux/excessive spitting up


  • Difficulty settling down
  • Persistently waking during the night
  • Restlessness during sleep

Feeding difficulties

  • Difficulty latching onto the breast or bottle
  • Preference for feeding on one side
  • Irritability or fussiness during feeding

Musculoskeletal concerns

  • Restricted movement in babies limbs
  • Asymmetry in arm or leg movements
  • Preference for turning the head to one side


  • Caesarean section or assisted delivery
  • Forceps or vacuum extraction during birth
  • Unsettled behaviour or discomfort post-birth


  • Persistent irritability or discomfort
  • Clenched fists or tensed muscles
  • Dislike of being handled or touched

The First Appointment and what to expect

The first appointment will involve taking a full case history, assessment and if appropriate, treatment. If you are bringing in your baby for treatment, you will be asked about your pregnancy and birth and also about the parents’ general health. Although cranial osteopathy does not hurt, from approximately 6 months of age, children are less likely to want to keep still, so it is a good idea to bring in toys (not electronic screens) for distraction, or for older children, to read to them. However, it is possible to treat children sitting or playing.

It’s not unusual for your child to feel a bit ‘out of sorts’ or even sleepy after a treatment. This is a normal reaction as the body is continuing to make adjustments and is a short term feeling, so please don’t be concerned by this.

How osteopathy works for children and babies

Osteopathy for babies employs a gentle and holistic approach to address musculoskeletal issues and promote overall well-being. It’s a gentle and non-invasive approach designed to support the natural healing processes of the body, promoting optimal health and well-being in the early stages of life.

Osteopathic treatment for babies begins with a comprehensive assessment by a qualified practitioner. This assessment may include a discussion of your baby’s medical history, birth process, as well as your specific concerns.
Osteopaths utilise soft and subtle manual techniques that are specifically adapted for the delicate nature of a baby’s body. These hands-on approaches aim to identify and address any tension, strain, or misalignment in the musculoskeletal system.
Each baby is unique, and osteopathic treatment is tailored to the individual needs of the child. Our osteopaths work closely with you to understand the baby’s behaviour, feeding patterns, and any other relevant information to customise the treatment plan.
Osteopathy focuses on restoring balance within the body. For babies, this means addressing any issues that may have arisen during the birthing process or in the early stages of development. By promoting proper alignment and function, our aim is to enhance the baby’s overall comfort and mobility.
In some cases, cranial osteopathy may be incorporated into the treatment plan. This specialised technique focuses on the head and its intricate structures, addressing potential imbalances in the cranial bones. Cranial osteopathy is particularly beneficial for issues related to head shape, feeding difficulties, and general discomfort.
Parents play a crucial role in the success of osteopathic treatment for babies. Osteopaths often provide guidance on exercises or activities that parents can perform at home to support the baby’s progress between sessions.

Ongoing assessment and communication between the osteopath and parents help monitor the baby’s progress. Adjustments to the treatment plan may be made based on the baby’s response and development.

Osteopathy for baby benefits

Osteopathy for babies offers a range of potential benefits, focusing on the musculoskeletal system and overall well-being of the child. Osteopathic techniques are gentle and non-invasive, helping to relax the baby’s muscles and release tension, providing a sense of calmness and comfort.

And by addressing musculoskeletal issues early on, osteopathy supports the baby’s natural development, encouraging optimal movement patterns and posture. Osteopathy can also be beneficial for babies experiencing difficulties with breastfeeding or bottle feeding. By addressing any oral or facial tensions, it may improve the baby’s ability to latch and feed effectively.

If musculoskeletal discomfort is affecting the baby’s sleep, osteopathy may help promote better sleep patterns and reduce restlessness during naptime and nighttime. Cranial osteopathy focuses on the head and its structures, addressing concerns related to head shape irregularities, moulding from birth, and potential imbalances in the cranial bones. Babies often experience strains during the birthing process. Osteopathy can help alleviate these strains, particularly in cases of assisted deliveries or caesarean sections.

Osteopathy for Babies FAQs

An osteopath for babies specialises in assessing and treating musculoskeletal issues in infants. Using gentle, hands-on techniques, they aim to promote proper development, alleviate discomfort, and address issues such as tension, stiffness, or misalignment in a baby’s body.

Yes, osteopathy for babies is generally considered safe when performed by qualified and experienced practitioners. Osteopaths use gentle and non-invasive techniques tailored to the delicate nature of an infant’s body. Always ensure that your chosen osteopath has experience in treating babies and holds the necessary certifications.

While not every baby requires osteopathic treatment, it can be beneficial for those experiencing musculoskeletal issues, feeding difficulties, or excessive crying. Consult with your paediatrician or an experienced osteopath to determine if your baby could benefit from osteopathic care based on their individual needs.

Cranial osteopathy is a specialised form of treatment within osteopathy that focuses on the head and its related structures. In babies, cranial osteopathy is often used to address issues such as birth-related strains, head shape concerns, and potential imbalances in the cranial bones. It is a gentle approach that aims to support the natural balance and functioning of the baby’s body. If you have concerns about your baby’s head shape, feeding, or sleeping patterns, cranial osteopathy may be considered as part of the treatment plan, following a thorough assessment by a qualified practitioner.

How to book an appointment

For an appointment for babies and children up to 4 years old, please book with any of our clinics across Wiltshire.

Corsham Clinic

Melksham Clinic

Unsure if Osteopathy is right for you? Get in touch using the form or call one of our clinics to speak with us

Corsham Clinic: 01249 248392
Swindon Clinic:  01793 978270
Melksham Clinic: 01225 704883
London Clinic: 0207 315 4262

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