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What Can Craniosacral Therapy Do for Me?

What Can Craniosacral Therapy Do for Me?  

by Terrence B. Grywinski 

 

Well-trained and experienced Craniosacral Therapists (CST) can help their clients beyond just the specific issue that drew those clients to the therapy.  Most people come to a CST Practitioner because they are suffering from sciatic or other body pain, TMJ, headaches and migraines, fatigue, and balance or mobility issues. 

Most clients are surprised that during the CST sessions, they experience more changes in their bodies than just the elimination of their specific problem. They begin to feel free of pain and more energized, relaxed, flexible, balanced and mobile. Often they find that walking is freer, breathing is easier, focus is sharper, and digestion is healthier. After a few CST sessions, they start to feel a greater sense of well-being. 

Fascia (connective tissue) is the cement that ties the physical body (muscles and bones) to the functioning of the physiological body (organs), of the central nervous system (brain and spinal cord) and to the peripheral nervous system (nerves and systems that enervate organs such as sight, hearing and digestion).  

Fascia is an entire network in the body, and when a change to the fascia occurs in one part of the body, the functioning of each one of these other areas is affected. For example, functions within the brain and spinal cord become less efficient with a decrease of Craniosacral Fluid (CSF) production resulting in less cleansings of brain and spinal cord cells, as well as a decrease in drainage of CSF fluid carrying metabolic wastes into the lymph system. Research has shown amyloid plaques are cleansed during sleep by the CSF. Can years of inefficient CSF functioning result in a poor functioning brain, senile dementia or Alzheimer’s? 

Every muscle is interspersed and enveloped in fascia. The muscle cells give the muscles their pulling power, but the fascia gives muscles their shape and connection to the bones with tendons and ligaments. Every muscle from head to toe is interspersed and enveloped in fascia. Without fascia, the muscles would pull apart. All the organs, from the mouth to the stomach, intestinal system and kidneys including the pelvic base are encased in and lined with fascia. 

The central nervous system (spinal cord and brain) is encased in fascia. The dura (strong fascia) encases the spinal cord, and as it enters the cranium, it opens and becomes the outer casing of the brain. It looks like an upside down mercury thermometer. The brain is separated into quadrants with a horizontal and a vertical sheet of fascia that is attached to the fascial outer lining of the brain and the dural tube.  

The peripheral nervous system (nerves) is also encased in fascial sheaths called myelin. People who loose the myelin sheath around their nerves develop muscular dystrophy. Fascia continues right down into the cellular level. Fascia is more than connective tissue that holds the body together. In its uninjured state, fascia keeps the body in a state of balance. In that balanced state, bodies are free of pain, full of energy and absolutely healthy. However, people lose that ideal pain-free healthy state when they are injured physically or emotionally. 

 In a car accident, however fast the car is travelling, that energy enters the body. The same happens during an emotional trauma. Fascia comes to the rescue. To minimize the amount of trauma the body suffers, fascia shortens and tightens to isolate that energy. Dr. John Upledger (the developer of Craniosacral Therapy) called these pockets of isolated energy “energy cysts.”  

Four things happen when fascia shortens and tightens. People experience pain in that area and in related areas. They also lose range of motion in the hips, shoulders, neck and other areas. Fascia is an entire network that encases all the body systems, muscles, organs, brain and spinal cord as well as the nervous system. All these areas experience that increased tension and as a result, they lose energy and their functioning becomes less efficient. After a car accident or a fall, beside experiencing pain and losing mobility and flexibility, many people experience digestive problems and develop headaches or foggy brain and begin to experience much less energy in their lives. 

Well-trained and experienced Craniosacral Therapists are able to locate and release these areas of restricted fascia. The body is a self-healing organism. Dr. John Upledger’s legacy is that he showed how the body can heal itself at a physical, physiological level. Using gentle holding techniques, the Craniosacral Therapist engages the body’s ability to correct, reorganize and heal the areas of restricted fascia. As a result, pain is eliminated, range-of-motion and mobility is restored, and energy, movement and function return to the affected organs and dysfunctions of the brain, spinal cord and the nervous system decrease 

Since fascia extends into the cellular level, Craniosacral Therapists can work with dysfunctions in areas such as the digestive system and the brain, spinal cord and nervous system. Craniosacral Therapy accesses the body’s ability to correct, reorganize and heal itself. CST does not just treat the symptom but solves the problem. Clients usually experience improvements and changes beginning with the first treatment.  

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