What is CranioSacral Therapy?
CranioSacral Therapy (CST) is a gentle, hands-on approach that releases tensions deep in the body to relieve pain and dysfunction and improve whole-body health and performance.
First discovered by an American osteopathic physician, new approaches have been further developed by Osteopathic Physician John E. Upledger after years of clinical testing and research at Michigan State University where he served as professor of biomechanics.
CST theory and practice is based on understanding the continuous subtle movements of the cranial bones. This rhythm is understood as a response to cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) fluctuations within the spinal cord and brain environment. The subtle movement extends outward to the entire body, in response to the fluid pressure changes around the central nervous system.
How does CranioSacral Therapy Work?
The brain and spinal cord make up the central nervous system. The central nervous system is heavily influenced by the craniosacral system which consists of the membranes and fluid that surround, protect and nourish the brain and spinal cord.
Every day your body endures stresses and strains that it must work to compensate for. Unfortunately, these changes often cause body tissues to tighten and distort the craniosacral system. These distortions can then cause tension to form around the brain and spinal cord resulting in restrictions. This can create a barrier to the healthy performance of the central nervous system, and potentially every other system it interacts with.
What does a session involve?
Patients remained clothed during a treatment while the therapist uses light touch (about the weight of a nickel) to assess and correct any disturbances in the crainosacral system. Hand placements may include contact with the tailbone, the head, abdomen and neck/throat.
Patients typically report a sense of deep relaxation during treatment. Treatments are generally one hour long.
How a treatment helps:
-helps restore normal cranial mobility
-releases abnormal myofascial restrictions and tensions in the body
-releases abnormal restrictions in the head
-eases restrictions of nerves
-optimizes cerebrospinal fluid movement through the central nervous system
Is there any condition for which CST shouldn’t be used?
There are certain situations where application of CST would not be recommended. These include conditions where a variation and/or slight increase in intracranial pressure would cause instability. Acute aneurysm, cerebral hemorrhage or other pre-existing severe bleeding disorders are examples of conditions that could be affected by small intracranial pressure changes.
Please notify your therapist if you have had history of head trauma, stroke , a neurological condition or blood disorder.
How many CranioSacral Therapy sessions will I need?
Response to CST varies from individual to individual and condition to condition. Your response is uniquely your own and can’t be compared to anyone else’s — even those cases that may appear to be similar to your own. The number of sessions recommended varies widely — from just one up to three or more a week over the course of several weeks.
What conditions does CranioSacral Therapy address?
• Migraines and Headaches
• Chronic Neck and Back Pain
• Stress and Tension-Related Disorders
• Chronic Fatigue
• TMJ Syndrome
• Orthopedic Problems