What is Craniosacral Therapy?
CranioSacral Therapy (CST) is a gentle hands-on method of evaluating and enhancing the functioning of the physiological body system called the craniosacral system. The craniosacral system is comprised of the membranes and cerebrospinal fluid that surround and protect the brain and spinal cord.
By freeing the central nervous system to perform at its best, Craniosacral Therapy naturally reduces pain and stress, strengthens your resistance to disease, and enhances your health and well-being. Because it’s so gentle, CranioSacral Therapy has been proven effective for all ages, from newborns to elders (I treat age 8 and older).
How is CST performed?
A typical Craniosacral Therapy session takes place in a quiet setting. You remain fully clothed (loose fitting clothing recommended) as you relax on a comfortable padded table, or in a seated position. Through touch, I begin monitoring the rhythm of the fluid that is flowing around your central nervous system. Delicate manual techniques are the used to release restrictions in your body and head thus improving the function of your central nervous system. The sessions are generally deeply relaxing, creating a feeling of warmth or gentle pulsing in the areas the therapist is working. It can lead to profound changes as well as a reduction in the symptom presentation and dysfunctional patterns. A session is approximately an hour long, or I may incorporate some of the techniques in a traditional Physical Therapy session.
How did CST begin?
CranioSacral Therapy was developed by Dr. John Upledger, an osteopathic physician featured in TIME magazine as one America’s next wave of innovators. He was a professor of biomechanics at the Michigan State University College of Osteopathic Medicine. While there, he led a team of anatomists, physiologists, biophysicists, and bioengineers that performed and published the clinical research which formed the basis for the modality he named CranioSacral Therapy.
What can CST treat or positively affect?
- Back pain/injury, sciatica
- Neck pain/injury
- TMJ/jaw disorders, dental trauma
- Headaches (sinus/migraine)
- Muscle pain and joint injuries
- Chronic fatigue
- Stress related disorders
How many CST treatments will I need?
A typical course of treatment is a misnomer as each session is unique unto itself. Sometimes as little as one treatment is enough, but it usually takes an average of 3-6 sessions to achieve substantial effects in the vast of range of conditions listed above. The time between treatments usually increases as the treatment program progresses and as your body begins to make the repairs and corrections itself.
If the condition is acute (i.e. you are in a lot of pain and need to address it urgently), treatments are usually once or twice a week, and they progress to every two to three weeks as your symptoms dictate. In less acute conditions, treatments may be less frequent after the first several sessions. It is impossible to accurately determine how many treatments you will need, as it is dictated by how your body assimilates the work and make the self-corrections that are necessary for improved function and reduction of the on-going symptom patterns. My goal is to treat as little as possible, but as effectively as possible to facilitate as sense of self-empowerment and enhanced quality of life. I recommend you give CST at least 3-4 sessions to have an effect although in many situations it will usually have a noticeable effect far more quickly than this. Although I cannot guarantee outcomes, over 90% of patients receive substantial benefit from CST and usually more quickly than they expect. Many people come with problems that they have had for decades.
Long term maintenance:
In addition to CST’s beneficial impact on pain relief and structural balancing, it can be a very effective component as part of a long term health/wellness program. Preventative treatment sessions can improve your sense of wellbeing and directly contribute to your good health. The frequency of wellness sessions will vary but are usually in the once a month to once every 2-3 months, depending on the needs and desires of the individual.