Christmas/New Year opening hours

Merry Christmas to all our friends and patients, from Helena & David at Village Osteopaths.  We will be taking a break over Christmas and New Year so if you need a recommendation for an emergency in that period or want to book for our return in January, call/text Helena 0n 07805 650667.

Osteopath David Vaux joins Village Osteopaths in September

From 13th September 2017, Registered Osteopath David Vaux will be joining Helena at Village Osteopaths, initially working on Wednesdays while Helena is on annual leave in September and continuing after she returns.  David brings a wealth of experience, both in family osteopathic practice and in elite sports and working with musicians; he also works with world-renowned cranial osteopath Stuart Korth.  Helena is delighted that David will be working at Village Osteopaths; further information about him is available on his website

Changes in Personnel at Village Osteopaths

In June, Village Osteopaths said farewell to Martin File who was travelling from Kent to work with Helena.  Martin was offered an unmissable opportunity closer to home, we wish him well with his new practice.

We are planning  that a new osteopath will be joining Helena in September – full details to follow by newsletter once everything is finalised, so register now to make sure you receive the details.

Details of Helena’s Dorset practice

You can find details of Helena’s Dorset practice, Jurassic Coast Osteopathy in Weymouth at her website and on her Facebook page for the clinic .  Helena is in Dorset from Wednesdays to Fridays, working in Weymouth and Dorchester; she is also able to see animals in and around the Portland, Weymouth and Dorchester area – contact her on 07805 650667 for further details.

Clinic Update November 2016

Martin is now offering appointments late on Tuesdays (6pm-9pm) and early on Wednesdays (from 7.30am).  He is also available for home visits or to give talks to groups on Wednesday evenings if he is not in clinic.

Helena is currently in Newdigate on Tuesdays from 8pm-6pm but can sometimes offer emergency appointments on a Monday afternoon.

If you need an appointment, text or call Helena 07805 650667 or Martin 07970 627762 and we will do our best to accommodate you as quickly as possible.

New Osteopath Joins the Practice

Welcome to Martin File, who has been covering the clinic while I have been recovering from surgery.  I am very pleased to announce that Martin will be staying with the practice on my return from 1st November 2016, initially covering Wednesdays but potentially expanding to include other days.  Martin can be contacted directly on 07970 627762.

News May 2016 – new clinic locations and times

Exciting times… Newdigate Clinic has moved next door at Greens Farm, to give us more space and light in the treatment room with a ‘cosier’ feel in the waiting area (according to all the patients who have been there) and easier access with much lower steps than the previous room.  I am still working the same days at Newdigate (Tuesday all day and Thursday mornings) and nothing else has changed – it is still the same lovely location with easy parking between Dorking and Horsham.

Moving on… with the departure of my colleague on maternity leave and my recent house move to Dorset, I am no longer in Reigate on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.  This has been replaced by the following clinics:

  • Ocean Therapy, Weymouth – Monday mornings 9-12 (from June)
  • Priory Osteopaths, South Nutfield near Redhill – Wednesdays either am or pm
  • Dorchester Osteopaths – Friday afternoons 2-6.

My number, for advice or for appointments, never changes – 07805 650667 – give me a call.

Sleep Apnoea – a bit more than just snoring

As an osteopath, patients come to me with one problem but often during our conversation and my assessment, it becomes apparent that something else is going on. In the last few months, I’ve had a few patients come in who I’ve known or suspected have had sleep apnoea.

So what is sleep apnoea and how does it relate to snoring?

Lots of people snore and the reason for most of us is that at night, the soft tissues of our neck and palate relax and become narrower, causing the air to move in and out faster and causing the tissues to vibrate. Things that make this more likely are being overweight, drinking alcohol (which is a muscle relaxant) particularly in the evenings, smoking or being congested in either the nose or throat (e.g. from colds, nasal allergies or inflamed tonsils) or taking sedatives  (source:

This can become a vicious circle, since it is thought that the vibration damages blood vessels that supply the muscles of the head and neck, hence increasing the likelihood of the airways narrowing as the muscles relax, thus making the problem worse. In some people, it might be a relevant factor in neck pain and jaw problems (which might also affect the snoring) – and it’s often a big cause of friction with partners, whose sleep is disturbed (often more so than the snorer’s).

So it’s important if you snore to try to do something about it – this website gives lots of helpful suggestions

Another reason for doing something about it is that it may indicate (or progress to) sleep apnoea – which is a condition with potentially serious implications.

Sleep Apnoea occurs when the relaxing and narrowing of the airways during sleep is so severe that it interrupts the sufferer’s breathing, reducing oxygen supply to the brain and causing them to wake up. This can happen 100s of times a night, but the sleeper may not be aware (although often partners will be), however they often suffer from symptoms that are more than just snoring e.g.
– restless/unrefreshing sleep
– frequent trips to the toilet every night
– morning headaches
– excessive daytime sleepiness and irritability
–  impaired concentration
– loss of libido

Daytime sleepiness increases the risks of accidents while driving or operating machinery at work and sleep apnoea increases the risk of high blood pressure, diabetes and stroke, but many people are living with this problem without realising.

If you want to know more about snoring and sleep apnoea, this video explains the difference between them and talks about some of the treatments

The British Snoring and Sleep Apnoea Association, just round the corner from my Reigate clinic, has a great website with lots of information ( and offer consultations, or you can see your GP if you suspect you may be suffering from sleep apnoea.

In the meantime, if you are a snorer, there are lots of things you can do for yourself – lose weight, give up smoking, don’t eat heavy meals or drink alcohol less than a couple of hours before bed and tone up your neck and throat muscles.

In a small study of people with sleep apnoea who were given exercises to do, a significant number had improvement in their symptoms and a reduction in their collar size just by doing exercises – you can download my compilation of exercises from that study and other sources here Throat exercises to reduce snoring and sleep apnoea you don’t have to do them all but pick a few to do each day in rotation.   Or if you want to tone up your throat muscles while having a bit of fun and stimulating your brain why not take up singing or playing the trumpet or even the digiridoo – another study showed reduction in snoring for taking up this instrument, which (like the trumpet) requires a technique called ‘circular breathing’ to play it successfully.