Quick LinksWho benefits from Craniosacral Therapy? How does it work? Principles of Craniosacral Therapy The connection between Craniosacral Therapy and Birth Integration Therapy
Craniosacral Therapy is a holistic approach toward better health and wellbeing, beneficial in a large variety of medical conditions. It comprises a very gentle bodywork that releases physical and emotional tension from the body-mind system. Because of its softness, it is especially suited for treating babies and children.
William Garner Sutherland, an American osteopath, discovered the mobility of the cranial bones in 1899, and is regarded as the founder of Craniosacral Therapy. Since then, our insights, understanding, knowledge, and experience of the craniosacral system have expanded tremendously. Practitioners all over the world are using this profound system for the benefit of their patients.
What you can achieve with Craniosacral Therapy depends a lot on the practitioner and their training and background. As a medical doctor I incorporate my clinical knowledge and experience into the treatment.
Being a mediator between body, mind, and soul, the craniosacral rhythm has a regulative impact on our autonomic nervous system, our hormonal system, the organ functions, the muscle tension, and on our emotions. This is why Craniosacral Therapy offers such a wide variety of applications:
- It can address a more structural level by working with injured joints, certain organs, or specific body areas.
- It can balance the autonomic nervous system with an effect on your overall wellbeing as well as your ability to cope with stress.
- It can also facilitate trauma resolution and accompany you on your journey toward personal and spiritual growth.
Craniosacral Therapy can be described as body work as well as energy work. Depending on your intention and goal, we can either stay on a very physical level or include emotional and spiritual aspects as well.
Who benefits from Craniosacral Therapy?
Some of the classic indications for Craniosacral Therapy are:
- Orthopedic and neurologic problems
- Chronic or acute pain
- Headache, and head and brain injuries
- Other injuries and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
- Post-surgical dysfunction
- Stress and tension related problems
- Emotional difficulties and periods of life transition
Craniosacral Therapy is helpful for a large variety of medical conditions. I have worked with patients of all ages and a multitude of problems, and everyone is welcome.
The emphasis of my practice is working with babies and children, and supporting families through pregnancy and birth, and their first years.
My vision is to make a difference on earth by changing the way we are welcoming babies, welcoming our next generation, and by helping to preserve health from the very beginning.
For babies, children, and pregnant families Craniosacral Therapy offers various benefits.
- Before and during pregnancy it can:
- Support you in your preparation for pregnancy
- Support you during pregnancy, birth, and postpartum
- Release pregnancy related problems, such as back pain, nausea, edema, headache, and pelvic imbalance
- Strengthen the bonding between mom or parents and their unborn baby
- Help you in your preparation for birth, including your preparation for vaginal birth after cesarean (VBAC)
- Facilitate optimal positioning of the baby, for example when your baby is in breech position
- After birth it can:
- Balance your baby’s system to give him or her the best start, before minor imbalances turn into a problem
- Assist in integrating a difficult or challenging birth experience
- Resolve structural and emotional problems after a birth by vacuum extraction, forceps, or c-section
- Balance mom’s system, to help the transition from being pregnant and giving birth to being a mom and having your body back to yourself
- Provide support for mom’s postpartum challenges such as mastitis
- For babies and children it can:
- Improve the outcome for premature babies and children with developmental delay
- Aid babies with colic, sleeping or feeding challenges
- Aid babies and children with one-sided or unbalanced posture or movement patterns
- Provide additional therapy for babies and children with severe medical conditions, such as heart failure, Down’s syndrome, or disabilities
- Facilitate preparation for, or recovering from infant surgery
- Offer support during challenging phases of child development
- Alleviate side effects from vaccinations
- Improve learning difficulties
- Improve attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)
- Support children with autism
- Help families with adopted children
How does it work?
The treatment usually feels very pleasant, and clients will be fully clothed for the session.
By having a profound background knowledge in anatomy, physiology, and embryology, your therapist perceives imbalances in the system with her hands, and her gentle touch creates a safe and supportive environment where healing can take place.
The techniques used are soft, with hardly any pressure, and work together with the body’s inner wisdom.
The goal of Craniosacral Therapy is not only to correct an isolated problematic area in the body, but the holistic treatment of each individual person or family.
The craniosacral system literally extends from the skull – cranium – to the lower part of the spine – sacrum. And from this inner core system there are connections to all other body systems.
The brain and the spinal cord are surrounded by bones, which are lined with additional protective layers, called meninges. Inside of these meninges, brain and spinal cord are surrounded by liquid, called cerebrospinal fluid. This complete system vibrates in its own rhythm, palpable by trained hands.
Injuries or illnesses and stress can lead to disturbances in the system and can be treated by Craniosacral Therapy.
A skilled practitioner listens to the story that the body tells her by palpating the subtle pulsations and micro-movements. An interaction takes place between client and therapist, while introducing a new healing impulse into the system and inviting the inner treatment plan of the client to unfold.
Principles of Craniosacral Therapy
One of the main principles of Craniosacral Therapy is to provide space so that movement becomes possible again, because movement means being alive.
More space can be needed for a stiff or injured joint, a blocked vertebra, the liver after dealing with medication or anesthesia, the baby’s head after its molding during birth, the brain after a head injury – just to name a few. Although the particular technique or hand position might be different each time, the principle of providing more space stays the same. It even applies to our emotions. Our whole being has to expand in order to feel joy and happiness again, after being compressed in a period of sadness or anxiety.
Another main principle is that we focus on the overall health first. Paying attention to the symptoms comes second. Even in the middle of an illness, injury, or pain, there are still organs and parts of your body that work just fine. To first focus on the healthy flow will prepare the ground that the less functioning structures will find back to new balance, harmony, and healthy function.
The embryologic forces and their organizing principles, which created us in the very beginning, are still at work in a child or an adult. In fact, they are active as healing forces throughout our whole life, guiding our tissue repair as well as our own path toward health.
Stress, illness, and injury can override these self-regulating healing forces in us. One of the benefits of Craniosacral Therapy is that it helps you to restore the natural inner healing abilities. By activating the self-healing forces, this special therapy allows the ordering principles to emerge from within. This offers opportunities for more balance on a physical, emotional, and spiritual level. You will feel as if your inner batteries are recharged. And by strengthening your resistance to disease, Craniosacral Therapy is also a great preventive health measure.
The connection between Craniosacral Therapy and Birth Integration Therapy
There is a very close relationship between Craniosacral Therapy and Birth Integration Therapy.
Early imprints from the beginning of life are stored in our body system. Every body work, including Craniosacral Therapy, has the potential to bring cell memories, stored in our tissues, to the surface of our consciousness. Elements from Birth Integration Therapy can be helpful in integrating these memories.
And especially in babies and small children, body symptoms, such as an imbalance in the alignment of the spine, one-sided postures and movement patterns, or an overwhelmed nervous system, are often related to or caused by the birth process. Acknowledging the birth or other related events while working with the body has a much deeper healing effect than the body work just by itself.
In the next pages you can find more information about the special quality of Craniosacral Therapy during pregnancy, birth, and postpartum, the special quality of how I work with babies, and how I work with children.