*Craniosacral Therapy: A Whole-Body Treatment*
Craniosacral therapy has been gaining popularity as a treatment offering in clinics across Canada, yet there are still many people who have never heard of it. Here we answer some of your basic questions about craniosacral therapy and its intended health benefits.
_What is craniosacral therapy?_
Craniosacral therapy was popularized in the 1970s after the late Dr. John Upledger (an osteopathic physician) began researching its health benefits at Michigan State University. Craniosacral therapy can be defined as a gentle, hands-on holistic treatment that works directly with the body’s central nervous system to promote deep relaxation and well-being. More specifically, the therapist evaluates the subtle movement of the cerebrospinal fluid around the skull, spine, and sacrum. Irregularities or anomalies in cerebrospinal fluid rhythm can have wider implications for general well-being, which is why the therapist aims to encourage the cerebrospinal fluid to move freely and efficiently through the meninges.
_Why is cerebrospinal fluid important?_
The movement of the cerebrospinal fluid in the meninges has been referred to as “the breath of life”, which underscores its importance. The cerebrospinal fluid has three main functions in the body. First, it protects the brain and the spine from physical trauma by providing a “cushion”. Second, it helps circulate nutrients and chemicals to the brain that are essential to life. Third, it removes metabolic waste products from the brain, which helps maintain brain health and optimal functioning. A rhythmic, unhindered movement of the cerebrospinal fluid keeps these processes efficient which directly impacts the performance of the central nervous system.
_How is it a “whole-body treatment”?_
A typical craniosacral therapy treatment lasts between 45 minutes and an hour. Within treatment, the therapist places their hands on the client using a very gentle touch (no more than the pressure of a nickel). The therapist must use a gentle pressure in order to feel the subtle movement of the cerebrospinal fluid, and to identify restrictions in flow. Often times, the therapist finds restrictions in the soft tissues of the body as well, such as in the muscles or fascia. Since craniosacral therapy is generally soothing in nature, it promotes deep relaxation for both the mind and body. Clients report a wide-range of sensations during and/or after the treatment, the most common of them are: deep relaxation, mental clarity, and general sense of well-being. It also possible that the client experiences a somato-emotional release, which is a response to physical triggers of emotional pain; these responses are considered part of the healing process and are absolutely normal.
_Who is craniosacral therapy for?_
Craniosacral therapy is non-intrusive by nature, and it is generally safe for people of all ages and health backgrounds. According to the Upledger Institute International, craniosacral therapy can be used to help with the following:
• Migraine headaches
• Chronic pain
• Central nervous system disorders
• Motor-coordination impairments
• Concussions and traumatic brain injuries
• Alzheimer’s disease and dementia
• Spinal cord injuries
• Chronic fatigue
• Fibromyalgia and connective tissue disorders
• TMJ dysfunction
• Neurovascular or immune disorders
• PTSD, and more…
Rehab1 is now offering craniosacral therapy treatment at the Riverview and Moncton locations! Ashley Brzezicki RMT is your Go-To for Cranial-Sacral treatments in our Riverview Location, and Jessica Hansen is excited to offer this treatment option out of our Moncton Office! To book your appointment, please call 854-1151, or book online.