CRANIOSACRAL THERAPY & SOMATIC EXPERIENCING
Both CranioSacral Therapy and Somatic Experiencing are holistic therapeutic approaches that incorporate a person’s mind, body, spirit, and emotions in the healing process. They are non-invasive modalities that encourage regulation and resilience at any age. Addressing a wide range of conditions, this unique combination can help recover from trauma and manage stress. Both CST and SE are an alternative approach that has been increasingly used as a preventative self-care measure, or to help alleviate acute symptoms, and can be used in complement of traditional allopathic medicine.
What Conditions Can it Help?
Stress related disorders
Neck & back pain
Headaches & migraines
PTSD & C-PTSD
CranioSacral Therapy (CST)
Like the movement of the breath or the cardiac pulse, the motion of the cerebrospinal ﬂuid can be felt anywhere on the body with a developed and trained touch. Restrictions are released from the core, and because structure and function of the body are interrelated, enhancing the performance of the nervous system consequently improves the overall health. Using a light touch, CST helps release the imprint of physical, psychological and emotional stress, and helps to break long held tension patterns. CranioSacral Therapy is a unique experience. Most people feel an immediate sense of deep relaxation and come out of a session feeling centered and refreshed. The felt experience is different for each person and for each session.
CST should not be used under the following conditions:
• Recent brain hemorrhage or stroke
• Recent spinal tap or puncture in the CranioSacral system
• Recent fracture of the skull, vertebrae or ribcage
• Arnold Chiari Malformation
• Any condition where a variation and/or a slight increase in intracranial pressure would cause instability
If you have any concerns about CST you should consult your physician prior to receiving a session.
Somatic Experiencing® (SE)
Somatic Experiencing®, developed by psychologist Dr. Peter Levine and supported by research, is a naturalistic approach to the resolution and healing of trauma. It is based on the idea that trauma experiences can lead to dysfunctions in the nervous system when they remain unprocessed. This therapeutic method employs awareness of body sensations to help people resolve unprocessed body trauma gradually, organically, and safely.
SE is different from traditional talk therapy as it focuses on the somatic response to trauma rather than the narrative itself. The main role of the therapist is to help you understand how your body regulates stress, and observe your body sensations to see how they can be connected to the trauma experience. SE incorporates tracking sensations, pendulation, titration, the use of breath, movement and regulating practices, the Polyvagal theory, and may use therapeutic touch in support of the trauma renegotiation process.
SE addresses both psychological and physical symptoms of trauma, and breaks down the healing experience into small steps, slowing it down, rather than encouraging catharsis. This process encourages you to be more in tune with your own sensations and reactions. While increasing your capacity to process and tolerate those experiences within your nervous system, you are inviting a more organic body regulation.
What is a Session Like?
At Flowing Still, the practice of Somatic Experiencing is blended with a CranioSacral therapy session to provide support in the healing process. In this case, the session is very similar to what is described in the CST section, and uses a gentle therapeutic touch for about one hour.
SE can also be done without the use of touch, in person or remotely, by having a rooted conversation in the person’s nervous system while tracking sensations in the body.