CranioSacral massage, also known as Cranial Sacral Therapy (CST), is the gentle, subtle manipulation of the muscles and tissues surrounding the skull, spinal column, and sacrum.
A CranioSacral session has a goal of normalizing the flow of cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) along the entire spine, removing blockages and restoring the body’s natural ability to heal from illness or injury. This fluid bathes the brain and spinal cord, providing mechanical protection from injury. It also provides a route for the immune system to deliver aid to these vital structures.
This therapy often provides emotional stress relief in addition to the physical benefits. Many clients consider this the most relaxing massage treatment style.
Some conditions that might cause a client to seek this type of treatment include:
- Insomnia (difficulty sleeping)
- Chronic sinus problems
- Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
- Neck pain
A proper CST treatment plan would include at least three closely spaced sessions with ongoing maintenance appointments for maximum benefit.
CranioSacral Massage is an excellent choice for patients who can not tolerate other massage modalities, including those in hospice or palliative care, going through chemotherapy/radiation, and the elderly or anyone with extremely limited range of motion due to paralysis or arthritis.
CranioSacral Massage Treatment
Typically, you will remain clothed during a CST session, so wearing loose, comfortable clothing is highly recommended. You will lie on your back and I will reach under your body to very gently hold and manipulate many areas along the spinal column.
CSF has a “pulse” independent of your heart beat and moves along the CSF chamber very slowly. I can detect this pulse with my fingertips and will feel for this motion with every repositioning of my hands, making adjustments to guide the flow of fluid.
You may experience the following sensations during a session:
- Deep relaxation, even sleep
- Tingling or “pins and needles” sensations that radiate to your arms and legs
- Auditory and visual hallucinations, usually hearing unusual “water sounds” and seeing colors
- Hot or cold flashes