Craniosacral Therapy: What is it and What are its Benefits?

CranioSacral therapy (CST) is a gentle, hands-on healing modality that works with the soft tissues and fluid systems of the body to release restrictions and promote balance. The Craniosacral system includes the bones, connective tissue, and fluid of the head, spine, and sacrum (tailbone), as well as the cerebrospinal fluid that surrounds and bathes the brain and spinal cord. Because cranial bones are interconnected with the entire skeleton, CST can have a profound impact on the whole body. 

Craniosacral chiropractors at Tri-States Chiropractic Health and Injury Care in Dubuque use a variety of techniques, by applying light pressure to the head and spine, practitioners of CranioSacral Therapy (CST) can release restrictions in the membranes and improve the flow of cerebrospinal fluid. This, in turn, can improve whole-body health by reducing stress and tension, stimulating the immune system, and improving circulation. CranioSacral therapy is generally considered to be safe for most people. However, it’s important to consult with your health care provider before beginning any new type of therapy.

What is CranioSacral Therapy (CST)?

CranioSacral therapy is a type of massage that focuses on the skull, spine, and pelvis. It can be used to detect imbalances in the craniosacral system and correct them. The goal of craniosacral therapy is to relieve pain and dysfunction in the body, improve whole-body health and performance, and help the body to self-correct. 

CST is based on cranial osteopathy, which was developed by an American medical doctor named John Upledger. Dr. John Upledger observed that when he applied light fingertip pressure to a person’s skull, he could detect very small rhythmic motions. He concluded that these motions were caused by the ebb and flow of cerebrospinal fluid. He further theorized that dysfunction in the CranioSacral system could be a cause of illness or pain in other parts of the body. 

How Does Craniosacral Therapy Work?

Therapists believe that this minute amount of movement is essential for draining cerebrospinal fluid from the brain and down the spinal cord. This fluid is responsible for cushioning and protecting the brain and spinal cord; however, when it becomes stagnant or blocked, it can cause a whole host of problems. Craniosacral therapists aim to release any blockages in this fluid so that it can flow freely again. 

CST assessment seeks out these imbalances and restrictions to release them using very gentle techniques. The goal is to promote optimal functioning of the whole body by freeing up any impediments to normal bodily expression. In this way, CST supports your body’s own ability to heal itself. 

It can be an excellent way to unplug from the hustle and bustle of daily life and tune into your own body’s inner wisdom. It is a gentle yet powerful way to support your overall health and well-being. 

Benefits of Craniosacral Therapy in Dubuque

Craniosacral therapy (CST) has a wide range of potential benefits. This type of therapy can be used to relieve pain, improve range of motion, reduce stress and anxiety, improve sleep quality, boost immunity, and promote physical and emotional well-being. 

This kind of therapy may also help to improve symptoms associated with conditions such as: 

  • Chronic Pain

Helps to relieve chronic pain by releasing restrictions in the skull and spine. This release of pressure can help to relieve pain throughout the body. Craniosacral therapy is often used in combination with other treatments, such as acupuncture or chiropractic care. If you suffer from chronic pain, craniosacral therapy may be able to help you find relief.

  • Depression

Depression is a mental health condition characterized by feelings of sadness, loss of interest or pleasure, fatigue, changes in appetite or weight, sleep disturbances, and more. Craniosacral therapy has been shown to be an effective treatment for depression. One study found that CST was just as effective as cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) in reducing symptoms of depression after 12 weeks. CST was also found to be more effective than CBT in reducing rumination—a repetitive pattern of negative thinking that can worsen symptoms of depression. 

  • Fibromyalgia

Fibromyalgia is a disorder that is characterized by widespread musculoskeletal pain, fatigue, and tenderness in the joints, muscles, and tendons. Additionally, people with fibromyalgia may also experience sleep problems, memory issues, and difficulty concentrating (often referred to as “fibro fog”). While the exact cause of fibromyalgia is unknown, it is thought to be the result of a combination of genetic and environmental factors. 

  • Scoliosis 

By releasing restrictions in the craniosacral system, craniosacral therapy can help relieve pain caused by scoliosis. Improving body function, craniosacral therapy can help improve the appearance of scoliosis. And lastly, by helping to reduce stress, craniosacral therapy can help to prevent further progression of scoliosis. 

While there is no known cure for scoliosis, craniosacral therapy can help lessen the pain and improve the appearance of the condition. 

  • Headaches & Migraines 

Releasing restrictions in the cranial bones can improve CSF flow and drainage, which can help to reduce pressure on the brain tissue. Improving movement of the cervical (neck) spine can ease muscle tension and help to prevent pinched nerves or other irritations of the nervous system that can lead to headaches. Reducing stress can help to lower adrenaline levels, heart rate, and blood pressure, all of which can contribute to headache or migraine symptoms.  

  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)

It can be an effective treatment for Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) because it helps to relieve the physical manifestations of trauma held in the body. When someone experiences trauma, their sympathetic nervous system (responsible for the fight-or-flight response) becomes activated. This activation can lead to a number of physical symptoms such as muscle tension, shallow breathing, and headaches. CST can help to release these physical symptoms, which in turn can help to ease the psychological symptoms of PTSD such as anxiety and flashbacks. 

  • Epilepsy

CST has also been shown to be helpful for reducing stress levels more generally. Stress has been identified as a possible trigger for seizures in some people with epilepsy, so reducing stress levels with CST may help reduce seizure frequency indirectly by reducing the likelihood of stress-induced seizures. 

  • Temporomandibular joint disorder (TMJ)

This condition is caused by dysfunction in the temporomandibular joint, which is located in front of the ear. Craniosacral therapy can help to release restrictions in this area and provide relief from pain and other symptoms associated with TMJ. 

  • Stroke

Helps to relieve some of the symptoms associated with stroke. First, as mentioned above, it can help to improve drainage of the lymphatic system and increase blood flow to the brain. This helps to reduce swelling and inflammation in the brain, which can lead to improved cognitive function. Second, craniosacral therapy can help to relieve muscle tension and pain. This can be beneficial for reducing stress and anxiety levels, as well as improving quality of sleep. And finally, craniosacral therapy can help to boost your mood by releasing endorphins (feel-good hormones) into your body. 

Side Effect & Risks of Craniosacral Therapy in Dubuque 

The most common side effect of Craniosacral therapy is feeling sleepy or tired after a session. 

This soreness is typically due to the therapist applying deep pressure to the muscles and tissues in your head, neck, and back. The soreness usually goes away within a day or two. 

Other potential side effects include: 

* Discomfort or pain in the areas where you were treated 

* Dizziness 

* Nausea 

* Vomiting 

* Fainting 

These side effects are generally temporary and should resolve within a day or two. If you experience any side effects that last longer than a few days or that are severe, you should consult with your doctor. 

Risks of CranioSacral Therapy

There are very few risks associated with Craniosacral therapy since it’s a gentle treatment. However, there are a few contraindications, which means that this therapy may not be recommended for certain people. These include: 

* Pregnant women 

* Children under age 3 

* People with osteoporosis or other bone diseases 

The main risk is that some people may feel nauseous or light headed immediately after treatment due to the release of toxins from their system. It’s important to drink plenty of water after your session to help flush these toxins out of your body. Other than that, there is very little risk associated with this therapy. 

What to Expect in a Craniosacral Therapy Session in Dubuque

During a typical craniosacral therapy session at Tri-States Chiropractic Health and Injury Care in Dubuque, you will lie down on a massage table in a comfortable position. The therapist will then assess your body’s structure and alignment. Once the assessment is complete, the therapist will begin working on specific areas of your body using gentle pressure and touch. The therapist may also use light energy work on your body’s energy centers. 

Craniosacral therapy is not meant to be painful; instead, it should be relaxing and soothing. You may feel a sense of deep relaxation during or after your session. Craniosacral therapy sessions typically last between 45 and 60 minutes. Most people report feeling refreshed and invigorated after a craniosacral therapy session. 

Craniosacral Therapy in Dubuque

Craniosacral therapy is a gentle, noninvasive therapeutic modality that works with the nervous system to release holding patterns throughout the body. It can be used to ease a wide variety of physical and mental conditions. It is based on the idea that the body’s natural rhythms can be used to diagnose and treat dysfunction.

If you’re looking for a new way to relax and de-stress, or are experiencing pain in any area of your body, craniosacral therapy at Tri-States Chiropractic Health and Injury Care in Dubuque may be the right treatment for you. This unique form of massage has been shown to help with a variety of issues, from chronic pain to mental health concerns. Contact us today at (563) 585-0800 to schedule an appointment and find out if craniosacral therapy is the right choice for you.

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