Craniosacral therapy (CST) is a gentle, alternative hands-on treatment that works on removing perceived restrictions in the body’s tissues and engages the body’s self-regulatory and self-corrective mechanisms.
The craniosacral system includes the bones, nerves, fluids and connective tissues of the cranium and spinal area.
The method of application includes the whole-person approach to healing and the treatment aims to improve function of the central nervous system by balancing the fluids, bones and membrane structures around the brain and spinal cord.
The central nervous system governs all of our physiological systems and functions and has an innate intelligence that knows how to stay in balance with itself and its environment. If the body cannot dissipate the forces of injury, trauma or accumulated stressors it will store them and compensate for them as best it can. This can cause restrictions to normal movement and can lead to pain and decreased function at the site of injury or elsewhere in the body.
This therapy can assist the body to deeply relax and supports functions like sleep and digestion, allowing the body to move away from constant states of high stress.
headaches & migraines,
TMJ (Jaw) & dental problems
whiplash, head or spinal injuries
chronic pain, recent surgery or injury
tinnitus, chronic ear or sinus infections
pain, stress and nervous tension
digestive disorders, reproductive & hormone Imbalance
insomnia & anxiety
pregnancy, fertility, pre/post-natal care
post concussion syndrome
emotional based trauma
With over a century of discovery, practice and research craniosacral therapy has proven to be effective in treating a wide range of medical conditions for people of all ages and can be effective in acute and chronic situations.
The patient is laying on their back in a relaxed posture, the practitioner has one hand under the small of the back and one hand under the head. During the treatment you may feel subtle sensations throughout your body as tension is released. It has been observed that powerful shifts can occur when we take the time to deeply listen to the body and allow it to self-correct. The craniosacral therapist feels for patterns of restriction and follows them to their source and then works to assist the body to release each area helping with restoring improved function. The practitioner uses energy and expertise to help gently move internal systems restrictions through the patients body to the source of the restriction where they can be released. Furthermore, the practitioner’s deep and clear quality of presence can become an invaluable cue for the potential for change.
How many treatments are typical?
People often have one presenting problem and behind it we discover a list of contributing factors or a history of several injuries over a lifetime. One simple acute injury may take 1-2 treatments to reach the intended goal. More complex and persistent problems may take longer to treat. Your practitioner will discuss treatment options that are best for your individual case. Many people also find craniosacral therapy to be a valuable part of a maintenance program to decrease effects of day to day stress and improve quality of sleep.
Will my extended health benefits cover this treatment?
Yes. Craniosacral therapy is within the scope of practice for some Registered Massage Therapists in BC and some Acupuncturists. Both these treatments are covered by most extended health plans in the same way as a regular massage therapy or acupuncture appointment.