What is Craniosacral Therapy?

Craniosacral therapy describes the practice of gently manipulating the skull and soft tissues of the body to relieve pain and tension. This technique also creates harmony between the natural rhythms of the central nervous system.  It restores the body to a calm state so deep healing can occur.

What is the Craniosacral System?

Your craniosacral system is a self-contained system, a bladder filled with fluid. This bladder is known as the dura mater or “great mother.”  It surrounds your brain and spinal cord and attaches to the top of your sacrum (the triangular bone at the base of your spine).  It is also called the dural tube.  The cerebrospinal fluid moves with a rhythm, up and down your spine.  When the fluid comes up to your head, the plates of your cranium are supposed to shift and expand to allow your cranium to become shorter and fatter as it receives the fluid.  When the fluid is moving downward, your sacrum moves into a “happy puppy” position (tail in the air) to receive the fluid, and moves in a “frightened puppy” position (tail between its legs) to return the fluid.  This rhythm is going on 24/7.

This cerebrospinal fluid rhythm controls all of your autonomic system–anything that happens automatically in your body–heart beat, breathing, digestion, elimination, hormone production, and the functions of the nervous system.  The movement of the fluid up and down creates a rhythm.  It’s not the same as your heart beat or breathing, but it controls and has an effect on the nervous system.  The nervous system also controls muscles, skin and organs.  When you’re stressed, the nervous system goes into a sympathetic mode (your “fight or flight” reaction).  Stress causes a fight or flight reaction and your system starts pumping blood to your arms, legs and heart so you can react quickly.  Your autonomic functions take a back seat.  When the danger has passed, your body is supposed to reset and return to a parasympathetic mode.  Which means that all your autonomic systems are working efficiently and effectively.  For example, your body can heal.

Throughout our body we have connective tissue–fascia–a silky material such as you see when you look at a raw chicken drumstick.  The fascia is an interwoven framework that envelopes your entire body and connects everything: muscle, bones and organs.  In certain parts of our body, the fascia gets very thick, which helps compartmentalize the body.  For instance, the breathing diaphragm keeps your intestines separate from your lungs.  If an area of fascia in the body has been torqued or twisted or has undergone surgeries, it can restrict the dural tube.  The result is that the nerves at that level are overactive and may keep the muscles, skin or organ from functioning properly.  This could manifest in a rash, organ malfunction or muscle that refuses to relax.

How Craniosacral Therapy Benefits You

Craniosacral therapy releases the plates of the cranium and any other restrictions to the dura mater.  This returns the body to its natural, most effective state and its greatest ability to heal.  As a result, you sleep better, digest better, eliminate better, move better–your entire being functions better.

It awakens and balances all of the energies within the body and within the energetic systems.

What is Craniosacral Therapy Used For?

Craniosacral therapy helps alleviate a range of illness, pain and dysfunction, including:

  • Migraines
  • Chronic neck and back pain
  • Central nervous system disorders
  • Chronic fatigue
  • Stress