1. Who can benefit from Craniosacral therapy?
Craniosacral Therapy influences many body functions. It has an effect on the central nervous system, cardiovascular, respiratory, musculoskeletal, endocrine, immune system, connective tissues, body fluids and all the organs. Craniosacral Therapy has been shown to alleviate a wide range of conditions, including:
- Headache, migraine, insomnia
- Chronic neck pain, back pain, persistent pain anywhere in the body
- Asthma, bronchitis, sinusitis
- Tinnitus and middle ear problems, ENT problems
- Chronic fatigue, lack of energy
- Stress, tension, anxiety, emotional and depression related difficulties
- Hormonal imbalances
- Cardiovascular disease, high blood-pressure
- Motor coordination impairments
- Orthopedic problems
- Dental and Temporo-Mandibular Joint (TMJ) problems
- Traumatic brain and spinal cord injuries
- Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
- Post Viral Fatigue Syndrome (PVFS), myalgic encephalomyelitis (ME), glandular fever
- Post-surgical dysfunction
- Digestive problems, menstrual disorders
- Problems during and after pregnancy, depression, post operative effects, adhesion
- Birth trauma - with its profound physical and psycho-emotional consequences
- Infantile disorders: feeding difficulties, sleeping problems, colic, pyloric stenosis, squint
- Behavioral disorders, tantrum, obsessional behavior
- Learning difficulties, dyslexia, dyscalculia, concentration problems
- Autism, epilepsy, CP (Cerebral Palsy)
- The after effects of any chronic illness or debilitating disease
2. What does a treatment involve and how long does it take?
The client usually lies on his/her back fully-clothed on a comfortable massage table in a relaxing, friendly environment. At the beginning of the session the therapist makes contact by gently placing his/her hands on the client’s body and palpates the client’s craniosacral rhythm to evaluate the movement of the cerebrospinal fluid. The therapist detects any variances or possible restrictions in flow of the cerebrospinal fluid and related soft tissue in accordance with specific learnt techniques. When a restriction or variance change has been found, he/she helps the body release restrictions - which it has been unable to overcome on its own - that inhibit the body’s normal, self-correcting tendencies.
Over the course of a session, a sense of connection develops between the client and therapist. The client also becomes aware of his/her own healing mechanisms and begins to assist in his/her own healing.
A typical session will normally last between 60 to 90 minutes. The first session is typically a longer session, about 90 minutes.
3. What might I experience during a session?
The experience of Craniosacral Therapy is subjective, changeable, and sometimes very subtle.
As the touch used is gentle, but firm and reassuring, in the broadest sense, most everyone who has received Craniosacral Therapy reports a feeling of deep relaxation, which is accompanied by a feeling of ease and comfort, and that pervades the whole person physically, mentally and emotionally as well.
Some people feel as though they have been asleep, some fall into a deep, sleeplike meditative state. Sometimes the experience of CranioSacral Therapy is dramatic, while for other people, the first session in particular may be uneventful, although they feel somehow better afterward. Still others experience memories, emotions or a variety of physical sensations such as sensations of heat, tingling, and pulsation during the session.
CST is cumulative and even people who don’t notice much the first time usually have progressively deeper experiences when they continue.
Besides the almost immediate experience of stress release, a feeling of deep relaxation and being more centered, one may notice other positive changes that continue to unfold as the days go on.
The most common experience is a general well-being even long after the session.
4. How many sessions should I receive?
The number of sessions required depends on the actual problem that the client is having, and the client’s ability to self-correct and support physiological changes.
In general, from 3-7 sessions can have an enormous effect on most people health, however, some people may get complete relief on their first session. Most of the clients receive CST once or twice a week till they attain optimal physical and emotional health, and come back quarterly for another few sessions to maintain general health and well-being. Clients with chronic or debilitating situations often require long-term therapy and the frequency of sessions usually reduces over time.
5. Can craniosacral therapy be combined with other therapies?
CST is useful as both a primary treatment method and combined with other traditional or complementary modalities to create powerful effects.
6. Is there any condition for which craniosacral therapy should not be used?
CranioSacral Therapy should not be used in case of acute cerebral hemorrhage and in situations where a variation and/or slight increase in intracranial pressure would cause instability, such as recent skull fracture, acute cerebral hemorrhage, herniated oblongata, Arnold-Chiari malformation
7. I don't really feel any pain, why should I consider craniosacral therapy?
CST plays a vital role in prevention. It reduces accumulated stress, works to reverse the debilitating effect of stress by providing the conditions in which the nervous system can rest and rejuvenate. It can improve resistance to disease, improves the functioning of the immune system and enhance the body’s natural healing capabilities.
Anyone who regularly deals with stresses of life can benefit from CST. The therapy can help you to attain greater relaxation, balance in the mind and body and a feeling of greater health and well being.
Everyone who has ever received CranioSacral Therapy reports having more energy, sleeping better and being sick less often, even long after the treatment.
8. I am interested but skeptical. Do I have to believe in it for it to work?
It helps to have an open mind, but the benefits of CranioSacral Therapy are not dependent upon faith in the treatment.
9. How would you describe the effects of craniosacral therapy?
CranioSacral Therapy improves people’s quality of life in general as well as helping with specific problems. It can help you recover from the results of accidents, falls and strains as well as diseases. Psychological and traumatic conditions can also be helped. Cranial work can reduce stress and improve the functioning of the immune system.
10. Whom should I see?
Dr. John E. Upledger, American osteopath is credited with developing CranioSacral Therapy. In 1985 he formed the Upledger Institute, and since that time thousands of healthcare practitioners including doctors of Oriental Medicine, naturopathic physicians, psychologists, physical therapists, occupational therapists, massage therapists have been trained in the use of CST. Courses organized by the Upledger Institute are available in several countries of the world.
To make sure that you have the best possible experience, take the time to find and choose a qualified Upledger CranioSacral Therapy practitioner with whom you feel comfortable and who meets your standards.
You'll want someone who clearly describes the process and how he or she structures the session so you have an idea of what to expect. Your actual experience of the therapy is very subjective, but knowing what the practitioner will do next will help you relax into his or her care.
11. What should I do before, during and after a session?
Once you have taken the time to search for and find a qualified Upledger CranioSacral therapist with whom you feel a rapport, here are some suggestions that help you to gain the most of your CST session:
Be well informed. Read carefully our web page before calling for an appointment.
In case you find out that the date or time of your scheduled appointment doesn't suit you any more, you can reschedule or cancel it by making a call, sending a text message or an email, weekdays or weekends at any time. Please note however, that you will be charged for appointment cancelled within 24 hours. The purpose of this is to motivate patients to reschedule or cancel appointments in time, so patients on waiting list can use their places.
Drink plenty of water prior treatment.
Wear loose, comfortable clothes, or you can bring it with you and change at the clinic.
Use the restroom before your session so you are able to lie down comfortably.
Let us know your needs before and during treatment. For example, if you have trouble lying flat on your back, or you have had a surgery recently and your scar is still tender, or it is too hot or too cold in the room. Inform your therapist.
We do not advise you to chat with your therapist during treatment, turn your attention inwards instead. (Therapeutic dialogue initiated by your therapist is an exception.) Notice those many subtle changes in your body: physical sensations, images, memories, emotions, etc. You will have plenty of time to share your experiences with your therapist, who is also happy to answer your questions afterwards.
As the session progresses, feel free to adjust your position at any time, ask for additional support under your head or knees, or a blanket in case you are cold.
Just be you, the way you are now. This is your special time and your therapist is there to facilitate your healing process.