CranioSacral therapy is a very gentle, non-invasive treatment that improves the body’s function via the central nervous system. The practitioner lightly manipulates the head and lower spine area to induce the craniosacral system to go back into its normal rhythm.
You may be wondering, "What rhythm, what system?" The craniosacral system is the cerebrospinal fluid and membranes that bathe the brain and spinal cord. The system runs from your head – including your skull, face, and mouth – to your tailbone. The fluid and membranes of the craniosacral system move in slow, rhythmical waves, at about 6-12 cycles per minute. Imagine your brain and spinal cord sitting in a protective fluid that slowly undulates, and you have a good picture of how a healthy craniosacral system works.
A disruption of this rhythm can cause dysfunction in the brain and spinal cord, which in turn, can cause problems throughout the body. Examples include chronic pain, lowered vitality, recurrent infections, and the build-up of stress.
What can cause a disruption? Just as a number of things can disrupt the rhythm of blood pumping through your veins or air flowing into your lungs, there are many causes of dysfunction in the craniosacral rhythm. A hard fall on your tailbone, solid bump on the head, or inflammation near the spine could do it. Because your brain works closely with every part of your body, a disruption in the brain’s immediate environment can cause serious sensory, motor, or neurological dysfunction. Craniosacral therapy can provide a painless, gentle way to set the rhythm right again.
In line with the natnun circuit model, craniosacral therapy relies upon the body’s own self-correcting mechanisms to reset its rhythm. The practitioner does not actually put your craniosacral system into a rhythm. Rather, the healer removes any blocks that stand in the way of your body getting back into that rhythm.
Craniosacral therapy is wonderful as a treatment for disease, a preventive therapy, and especially as a health enhancer. The therapy got its first start from Dr. Sutherland, an osteopath working in the early 1900’s whose experimental discoveries only earned him accusations of quackery. Dr. Upledger later legitimized Sutherland’s work by establishing the scientific basis of the craniosacral system. He went on to train many healthcare providers in the technique, including acupuncturists, medical doctors, psychiatrists, osteopaths, chiropractors, psychologists, dentists, physical therapists, and occupational therapists.