"CranioSacral Therapy is a very soft touch, hands-on method of treatment. It deals with what we have named the craniosacral system, which is composed of a membrane that is waterproof that encases the brain and spinal cord and carries within it cerebrospinal fluid. The pressure and volume of the fluid go up and down. That makes it a hydraulic system, which needs to be free to move all the time because the fluid should be moving and bringing nutrients to all the neurons and taking away wastes and so forth. With CranioSacral Therapy, we have several entrees into this system-- most of them through bony attachments or through direction of energy or pulling of fascia--for alleviating any restrictions that might have accumulated due to injuries or illnesses. This therapy improves the health of the brain and spinal cord, which in turn, affects the whole body."
Dr. John Upledger, D.O., O.M.M
Creator of CranioSacral Therapy and SomatoEmotional Release
How does CranioSacral Therapy Work?
CranioSacral Therapy works by helping the body's natural healing mechanisms dissipate the negative effects of stress on the central nervous system.
This is accomplished through utilizing a physiological body system called the craniosacral system, which maintains the environment in which the central nervous system functions. It consists of the membranes and cerebrospinal fluid that surround and protect the brain and spinal cord, extending from the bones of the skull, face and mouth (which make up the cranium) down to the tailbone area (or Sacrum). The role of this system in the development and performance of the brain and spinal cord is so vital that an imbalance or dysfunction in it can cause sensory, motor and/or neurological disabilities.
Like the pulse of the cardiovascular system, the craniosacral system has a rhythm that can be felt throughout the body. Using a touch generally no heavier that the weight of a nickel, skilled practitioners can monitor this rhythm at key body points to pinpoint the source of an obstruction or stress. Once a source has been determined, they can assist the natural movement of the fluid and related soft tissue to help the body self-correct. This simple action is often all it takes to remove a restriction. Other times, CST may be combined with other complementary therapies to help restore the body to its optimum functioning level.
What conditions can CranioSacral Therapy Help?
Because of its influence on the functioning of the central nervous system. CranioSacral Therapy can benefit the body in a number of ways - from bolstering overall health and resistance to disease to alleviating a wide range of specific medical conditions.
Among CST's largest patient groups are those suffering chronic symptoms that haven't been aided by other approaches. In particual, CST is beneficial to those with head, neck, or back injuries resulting form an accident - be it from a car, sports or work mishap, or from a fall. The extremely light touch involved in the appication of CST makes it a safe approach as well fro childern, infants and newborns with early traumas, including birth traums. They especially can benefit from the timely identification and release of restrictionsin the carniosacral system, thereby preventing future difficulties, such as learning disabilities or hyperactivity.
Another area of prinical effectiveness is with stress-related dysfuntions. Insomnia, fatigue, headaches, poor digestion, anxiety and temporomandibular joint (TMJ) dysfunction are just a few examples. CranioSacral Therapy works to reverse the debilitating effects of stress by providing the conditions in which the nervous system can rest and rejuvenate. In fact, it's this capacity to reduce stress that's leading an increasing number of people to include CST as part of their wellness routines. Other conditions for which CranioSacral Therapy has shown to be effective are various sensory disorders. Among these are eye-moto coordination problems, autism, dydlexia, loss of taste or smell, tinnitus, vertigo and neuralgias such as sciatica and tic douloureux.