The Cranial sacral therapy benefits can include easing a number of conditions such as headache and migraines, neck, back and dental pain, nervous disorders and hyper activity. Also known as craniosacral therapy or craniosacral osteopathy, it is practised widely by physical therapists, naturopaths, chiropractors, occupational therapists, massage therapists, and even some dentists. The proponents of cranial sacral therapy believe that the benefits of the treatment may have an effect on many other areas of a patient's life, including focus, concentration and emotional balance.
The techniques used in cranial sacral therapy were discovered and developed in 1930 by William Garner Sutherland, a Scottish American physician and osteopath. He surmised that the brain produces a pulse that generates a flow of cerebrospinal fluid into the skull. The body depends on this flow of fluid to maintain balance, especially in the muscles and nerves around the head, neck and back. If there is any restriction in the neck, it prevents fluid from flowing freely into the thoracic inlet, and this in itself may cause headaches. An impaired or unbalanced flow may be to blame for problems within these areas, and with overall health. A variety of conditions can be improved with cranial sacral therapy, including brain and spinal injuries, tension, stress, exhaustion and temporomandibular (jaw joint) disorders.
Cranial sacral therapy aims to balance the various restrictions that affect the system, so that the mobility of the skull has full range of motion in relation to the sacrum bone. The therapy is a gentle non-invasive technique, which works on the cerebrospinal fluid and tissue contained in the membranes surrounding the brain and spinal cord. This therapy aims to treat the skull bones, sacrum and coccyx because they have ties to the membranes that support the cerebrospinal fluid. Very gentle manipulation will restore any asymmetries and promote a self-healing process.
The therapist uses light manipulation to assess and increase the physiological functioning of the body. Relaxing the restrictions of the craniosacral system to improve the functioning of the central nervous system, along with the natural process of self-regulation will assist the body in finding balance. Cranial sacral treatments may typically last one hour, and might start at the sacrum working up to the head, however the therapist will attend to specific areas as needed. The number of treatments required will vary according to the nature and severity of the ailment or damage to the system.
Many people experience relief from symptoms that appear completely unrelated to the cranial system, such as the ability to stand straighter, breathe deeply and more efficiently. Some may also notice increased energy levels, better sleep patterns and an improvement in general health, as well as improved communication in personal relationships. The benefits will vary according to the individual, as everyone has a unique brain chemistry and nervous system.