It can be frustrating and disheartening to have disfunction in the body, mind, or emotions and not be able to find an answer. Often, by the time a potential client contacts me, they are tired of seeking a solution, someone has mentioned cranio to them, and they are wondering if it will help.
The challenge is that our healthcare system is segmented with experts may only understand their specialty. But our body doesn't function in pieces; no part is completely independent from the whole. Seemingly unrelated symptoms or pains may, in fact, have the same root cause. The mind, body and spirit interact; a disfunction in one and create disfunction in the other two.
Craniosacral therapy supports the body's innate wisdom to unwind and heal disfunction. It gently rebalances the nervous system, calming down the fight or flight response. Sometimes the client discovers that the body was holding an old memory, with its emotions and pain, that is now ready to be lovingly released. The body wants to heal but we must remember that the only way it can communicate to us is through pain. Once the message is understood, the pain can dissipate.
Many clients receive cranio work several times a years just to keep the nervous systems functioning at its peak.
Below I have include links to a radio interview and to a lovely video as well as a list of FAQ .
FAQ About Craniosacral Therapy
What is the craniosacral system?
The craniosacral system is comprised of the membrane layers and fluid that surround, protect, nourish, and cleanse the brain and spinal cord. It's interconnected with the entire body and can be felt as a pulse, just like the heart or the breath. Some believe it is the first and last pulse to exist in the body.
How does craniosacral therapy work?
Craniosacral therapy works by finding areas in the body that are not moving well and then using gentle techniques to help the body increase balanced motion. The therapist connects to points on the body and feels the quality of the flow the the craniosacral system. The body wants to heal and uses the support from the therapist to release tension and rebalance.
Why is craniosacral therapy so helpful to well being?
Few body structures have more influence over your health and well-being than your central nervous system. And few body systems have more impact on your central nervous system than the craniosacral system (the soft tissues and fluid that protect your brain and spinal cord).
Everyday we experience physical, emotional, mental and spiritual stresses. For the most part, we process these stresses and release them. When to many stressors hit us a once (an accident or surgery), over a period of time (challenging work or family situations) the body can't process all of it. What can't be processed in the present moment gets stored in the physical body. Think of it like a filing cabinet full of old stories from your entire life labeled "To Be Dealt With When I Have the Time and Ability." Life goes on and we forget to clean out that file cabinet. We forget it even exists.
Now picture a clothes dryer that has gotten one little piece of clothing stuck in the door. At first the dryer can tumble just fine, but during the course of the cycle the clothing slowly twists into a knot around the one piece that isn't free to move. Eventually the knot gets so big it shuts down the dryer's ability to move and an error message appears on the dryer's panel. That's what the "filed stories" do in our body. That's why an old story can take years to cause a physical problem.
The good news is that we don't have to relive stressful events to release them. We don't have to even remember. Just having the willingness to release what no longer needs to be in the body allows the body to heal. Over the years of working with clients I have witnessed some just simply feel like a weight has been released without knowing why. Others have reconnected to a specific story as part of their healing. There is no right or wrong way of healing. We all do it differently.
Craniosacral therapy releases tension to allow the entire body to relax and self-correct by finding the restrictions in the movement of the cranio rhythm.
Restoring healthy movement to the cranio rhythm frees the central nervous system to perform at its best. The healthy nervous system then supports the rest of the body systems.
And because it’s so gentle, craniosacral therapy can be effective for all ages, newborns to the elderly.
Who does CranioSacral Therapy?
Practitioners of craniosacral therapy are found throughout the health care community, such as: occupational therapists, physical therapists, massage therapists, chiropractic physicians, osteopathic physicians, medical doctors, dentists, nurses, acupuncturists, homeopathic and naturopathic physicians.
Do ask questions of your potential practitioner. Where is they study? How many classes have they taken? How often do they use this therapy?
How does the client prepare for a craniosacral session?
Wear comfortable clothing; this work is fully clothed unless it is being blended into a massage session.
Take time to think about events or traumas that have impacted your body emotionally, physically, spiritually. What is it that you are wanted to shift or change or heal? How long has this issue affected your life?
What to expect from craniosacral therapy session
Session are usually 60 or 90 minutes in length. Children's session may be shorter.
Watch the link that is above the FAQ to see what a session looks like.
If it is your child (under 18) that is being worked on, you are required to be present during the entire treatment. A relaxed parent supports their child's session. The parent can relax and just breathe or listen to mediation music. Children feel their parent's energy. Sometimes it is helpful for the parent to have a session first to better understand the child's experience.
What you may experience during a craniosacral session?
Most people feel a general sense of relaxation and releasing of stress. Some go deeply into a meditative place, while others feel relaxed but alert to shifts they feel in their body.
Experiences during a craniosacral session are as individual as the clients and practitioners themselves. Experiences can even vary from session to session for the same client. At times a client may fall asleep, may recall memories or may see colors. Others will experience sensations within the body such as tingling, hot/cold, pins & needles, pulsations, a stretching of tissues in particular parts of the body, increased fluid flow or increased energy flow. Feel free to comment on anything you are experiencing, sometimes, through the attention to these experiences, the client is able to release long held pain or restriction.
What you may experience after a craniosacral session?
Just as individual experiences can differ, so can the immediate results. This relaxed state may cause some to sleep for many hours after a session. Others may experience an increase in energy. Some people report that they feel as if somebody had moved things about in their body.
Reduction of pain or an increase in function may occur immediately after the session or it may develop gradually over the next few days. For some there may be a reorganization phase as the body adapts to the release of previously held patterns.
Occasionally, a new pain arises to be addressed. The brain can only acknowledge three pains in the body at a time. That's why we can have "new" pains arise. They aren't actually new but were masked by more prevalent pains screaming for attention.
If an old emotion, memory, or pain comes up a few days after the session, allow yourself to look at it. This is a opportunity to see it with older, wiser eyes. You can thank it, process it and let it go for good.
Benefit from CranioSacral Therapy?
It may help the following:
Some of the conditions that craniosacral therapy may help are:
Elizabeth Bosse is a licensed massage therapist practicing in Murfreesboro, Tennessee. Her blog posts reflect her life experiences. She shares humor and wisdom to support others on their journeys.
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