CranioSacral Therapy (CST) is a gentle, yet profound, hands-on treatment that helps to release tension in the nervous system. This absence of tension helps to relieve pain, reduce stress, and improve whole-body function. Cranial osteopathy originated in 1898 by Dr. William Sutherland, DO. In 1975, Dr. John Upledger, DO expanded on Sutherland’s work and introduced CranioSacral Therapy and defined it as a treatment that “works with natural and unique rhythms of our different body systems to pinpoint and correct source problems.” CST uses a very soft touch to release restrictions in the soft tissues that surround the central nervous system.
The central nervous system is comprised of the brain and the spinal cord. Surrounding the structures of the central nervous system are three layers of membranous connective tissue (known as the meninges) and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF), both of which act to protect and nourish the brain. As fascial restrictions arise in the meninges, it can alter CSF flow and cause central nervous system dysfunction.
The meninges have various attachment sites within the skull, the first two bones of the spine, and the sacrum (tailbone), making them the primary focus of CST. Gentle manipulation of these structures helps to release tension in the membranes and restore optimal function. The primary emphasis of CST treatment is to encourage and enhance the body’s self-healing and self-regulating capabilities.
CranioSacral Therapy may benefit the following conditions:
• Chronic neck and back pain
• Migraine headaches
• Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
• Orthopaedic problems
• Stress and tension-related problems
• Motor-Coordination impairments
• Temporomandibular Joint Syndrome or Dysfunction (TMJ)
• Neurovascular or immune disorders
• Fibromyalgia and other connective-tissue disorders
• Birth trauma and perinatal challenges (i.e. trouble with breastfeeding)
• Tinnitus, hearing, and vertigo
• Menstrual pain
It is important to note that, beyond assessing palpatory tension of connective tissue, CST is not a diagnostic tool. The purpose of this treatment is simply to remove tension and optimize the body’s ability to self regulate.
Because of its gentle approach, CST is suitable for children, the elderly, pregnant patients, and adults of all ages. It can also be ideal for those in fragile or acutely painful conditions. Please contact us with any questions regarding chiropractic care and CranioSacral Therapy.