Cranial Sacral Therapy / Craniosacral Therapy

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How can Cranial Sacral Therapy help you?

Cranial Sacral Therapy (CST) can relieve compression in your head, neck, and back. This can soothe pain and release both emotional and physical stress and tension. It can also help restore cranial mobility and ease or release restrictions of your head, neck, and nerves.

CST can be used for people of all ages. It may be part of your treatment for conditions like:

  • Migraines and Headaches
  • Constipation
  • Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)
  • Disturbed Sleep Cycles and Insomnia
  • Scoliosis
  • Sinus Infections
  • Neck pain
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Recurrent Ear Infections or Colic in infants
  • TMJ (Temporomandibular Joints – lower jaw)
  • Trauma Recovery, including trauma from Whiplash
  • Mood Disorders like Anxiety or Depression
  • Difficult Pregnancies (HealthLine)
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Cranial Sacral Therapy (CST) is sometimes also referred to as Craniosacral Therapy. It’s a type of bodywork that relieves compression in the bones of the head, sacrum (a triangular bone in the lower back), and spinal column.

CST is noninvasive. It uses gentle pressure on your head, neck, and back to relieve the stress and pain caused by compression. It can, as a result, help to treat a number of conditions.

Through the gentle manipulation of the bones in the skull, spine, and pelvis, the flow of cerebrospinal fluid in your central nervous system can be normalized. This removes “blockages” from the normal flow, which enhances your body’s ability to heal. (HealthLine)

Craniosacral Therapy is becoming a treatment of choice in areas of pain, rehabilitation and neurology.  Also called CST, or Cranial Osteopathy, it is a gentle, non-invasive, hands-on technique, developed by an American Osteopathic Physician almost 100 years ago.

CST theory and practice is based on understanding the continuous subtle movements of the cranial bones, which result in a rhythm of approximately six to twelve cycles per minute. This rhythm is understood as a response to cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) fluctuations within the spinal cord and brain environment. The subtle movement extends outward to the entire body, in response to the fluid pressure changes around the Central Nervous System.

A CST Practitioners gently works with your whole body, including your spine and your skull—and its cranial sutures, diaphragms, and fascia. By using their hands as fine discriminating tools, Craniosacral Practitioners/Therapists are able to detect disturbances in the Cranial Sacral rhythm to help them identify areas of dysfunction, such as cranial, sutural, membrane and other soft tissue restrictions in your body.

You remain clothed during a treatment and treatments generally are one hour long.

A CST treatment works in the following ways:

  • Helps restore normal cranial mobility;
  • Releases abnormal myofascial restrictions and tensions in your body;
  • Releases abnormal restrictions in your head;
  • Eases restrictions of nerves;
  • Optimizes cerebrospinal fluid movement through your central nervous system; and
  • Helps restore misaligned bones to their proper positions (assisting troubles associated with your head, back, neck, hips, shoulders, arms, hands, knees and feet)

Craniosacral Therapy is beneficial for all ages from Infant to the Elderly:

  • Birth traumas and other perinatal challenges;
  • Infant latching and feeding difficulties;
  • Recurrent ear infections;
  • Facial asymmetries and eye motor problems;
  • Learning disabilities, A.D.D., A.D.H.D;
  • Gross and fine motor problems;
  • Developmental delays, autism;
  • Headaches;
  • Concussion, and post concussion symptoms;
  • Tinnitus, hearing loss and vertigo;
  • TMJ syndrome;
  • Stress disorders and insomnia;
  • Muscle and joint pain or injury; and
  • Many neurological conditions and pain syndromes.
    (The Cranial Therapy Centre – Toronto, Canada)

The Biodynamic approach to Cranial Sacral Therapy (BCST) has evolved into a remarkable Body Therapy that has created a highly skilled way of listening to the body’s inherent health expressions. The Practitioner typically looks for and encourages the forces of health to set the priorities of the session and to bring about natural adjustments from within your body’s own resources.

Biodynamic Craniosacral Therapy is characterized by a strong orientation to the holism of the human experience where both your body’s anatomy and physiology are related to in real time with the subtle forces of life that act through the interface of your body’s fluids. Subtle movements in your body’s fluid and tissue fields are being listened for and the natural movement towards stillness is seen as deeply healing.

The beauty of BCST is its simplicity. The Practitioner takes up a position of being neutral and allows the process of the treatment to unfold. The Practitioner is interested in facilitating your body toward intrinsic reorganizations across your body’s tissues, its fluid matrix, and its energetic and emotional layers, so that there is a holistic movement toward greater health. The Therapy creates a safe space for traumatic experiences to emerge and resolve smoothly without being overwhelming or re-stimulating.

The approach to the work includes a developed model of working with trauma processes. The Therapists’ embodied experience, touch and presence are the key components in creating a Relational Field that generates a deep sense of safety and capacity to heal from within in a client-led and -paced approach. 

The Therapy is gaining a lot of recognition and popularity because of its profound therapeutic effects. Practitioner trainings are now available in many countries across the world and communities of practitioners are starting to emerge.  In 2006 the International Affiliation of Biodynamic Trainings (IABT) was created to define standards in Biodynamic Craniosacral Therapy trainings and the term Biodynamic Craniosacral Therapy (BCST) was coined to differentiate the approach from other forms of Craniosacral Therapy.

Explore the Research

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