What is CranioSacral Therapy?
CranioSacral Therapy (CST) was pioneered and developed by osteopathic physician John E. Upledger following extensive scientific studies from 1975 to 1983 at Michigan State University, where he served as a clinical researcher and Professor of Biomechanics.
CranioSacral Therapy (CST) is a hands-on therapy, where the touch is gentle, non-invasive and usually subtle. It is a powerful therapy that affects and assists in improving the functions in the whole body.
Using ‘listening hands’ tuned to the feeling of the craniosacral rhythm, feeling how well the rhythm is reflecting out to the rest of the body and what may be able to do to improve its functioning.
The practitioner senses tensions in the body and helps to release them in a supported and comfortable way. During or after a session, you may feel calm and energized, with increased clarity of mind and a feeling of overall well-being.
Patients find CranioSacral Therapy effective for a wide range of problems associated with discomfort, pain, and dysfunction. Interestingly, this approach also appears to complement and stimulate the body’s natural healing processes, therefore CST is increasingly used as a preventive health measure.
Who is it for?
People may come for CranioSacral Therapy because they have an acute physical problem like a headache, back pain, long-standing problems both physical and emotional. Others come for ongoing support in their busy lives and for help to meet life’s challenges.
Because it is so gentle and non-invasive, CranioSacral Therapy is suitable for everyone from newborns to the elderly. Mothers and babies often come for problems associated with difficult or traumatic births. Letting go of tension and fear held in the body enables both to settle into calmness.
CranioSacral Therapy supports your body’s innate ability to balance, restore and heal itself, as well as helping to reduce stress and build your underlying energy.
CranioSacral Therapy (CST) is used to bolster resistance to disease, and is effective for a wide range of medical problems associated with pain and dysfunction such as
- Migraine Headaches
- Chronic Neck and Back Pain
- Motor-Coordination Impairments
- Central Nervous System Disorders
- Orthopedic Problems
- Concussions and Traumatic Brain Injuries
- Alzheimer’s Disease and Dementia
- Spinal Cord Injuries
- Infantile Disorders
- Learning Disabilities
- Chronic Fatigue
- Emotional Difficulties
- Stress and Tension-Related Problems
- Fibromyalgia and other Connective-Tissue Disorders
- Temporomandibular Joint Syndrome (TMJ)
- Neurovascular or Immune Disorders
- Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
- Post-Surgical Dysfunction
During a session
Your practitioner will take a written case history, listening with care to the reasons for your visit. This part of the session is important, both for gathering information and to establish a good understanding with your practitioner. The session typically lasts an hour, although this can vary. You remain clothed and will usually lie face up or on your side. The practitioner makes light contact with your head, the base of your spine, and other areas, encouraging your body to relax and begin to make the changes it needs. Because the body functions as a whole, your practitioner may focus on areas other than where your symptoms occur.
After the session
There is occasionally a short period of adjustment as part of the healing process, where you may become more aware of symptoms. Sometimes people report relief after only one or two sessions.
For long-standing problems, further sessions may be needed. Some people find they benefit from regular treatment over an extended period of time. Some patients have reported that in addition to noticing improvement in their physical or emotional symptoms, they also feel that they have more awareness of their own needs and strengths and their quality of life has improved.
CranioSacral Therapy is not intended as primary healthcare but to work alongside the relationship you have with your doctor.