Author Topic: Craniosacral therapy  (Read 8703 times)

Offline tellmetruth

  • Posts: 21
Craniosacral therapy
« on: March 15, 2013, 05:32:01 pm »
I've so recently begun to really start examining these things and it amazes me how many of these unscientific New Age therapies and practitioners charging money for them are actually out here. I just heard about this one for the first time this week. Some cursory Googling shows that many of these practitioners claim it is based on the practice of Native American bonesetters and often combine it with "shamanic healing," something I already know from exploring these forums should set off alarm bells. I wonder if this claim that has a history among Native American bonesetters is just being pulled out of the nuagey thin air?

I haven't looked very hard but I've yet to find any objective source backing up the claims of Native American origin of cranioscaral therapy. The Wikipedia article says it was developed by a doctor in 1983:

Also, I note that craniosacral therapy is often paired with something called Somato EmotionalRelease. There's something else that sets off my alarm bells. Doesn't sound like scientifically or pyschologically sound practice to me.
« Last Edit: March 15, 2013, 07:32:32 pm by tellmetruth »

Re: Craniosacral therapy
« Reply #1 on: March 22, 2013, 05:45:58 am »
I've had craniosacral therapy (once, from a physiotherapist) but also Cranial Osteopathy (many times) from qualified Osteopaths, to treat an injury. The osteopaths told me craniosacral therapy is a few bits "stolen" from Cranial Osteopathy, and sold as a "new" therapy. One of the Cranial Osteopaths told me she has treated several patients whose health was made worse by craniosacral treatments performed by non-qualified people.

Cranial Osteopathy is a post-graduate speciality, an extra qualification gained by some Osteopaths. Its history and development are very well documented. It is medicine/science. It is not New Age. I have never heard of any connection of these types of treatments to anything Native American. That would be fraud. 


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Re: Craniosacral therapy
« Reply #3 on: March 23, 2013, 02:14:07 am »
This seems to be a confusing subject with some conflicting information. 

I have never been to an osteopath, but I have always considered them equivalent to regular M.D.'s and Wikipedia seems to agree somewhat:

The scope of practice of osteopathic practitioners varies by country. The American Osteopathic Association recommends using the terms osteopathic physician and osteopathic medicine to distinguish individuals trained in osteopathic medicine in the United States who have attained the degree of Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (D.O.), a degree equivalent, though different in certain aspects, to that of Doctor of Medicine (M.D.),[2][3][4][5] who practice the full scope of medicine and receive additional training in osteopathic manipulative medicine from individuals described as osteopaths who use osteopathy, the restricted-scope form of practice outside of North America.

But then they go on to say this:

The use of osteopathy is not always based on science, and there is little evidence that osteopathy is effective in treating any medical condition except for lower back pain.

Doctors Hospital is located in the town where I live and it seems to operate as any other hospital would:

As to craniosacral therapy, this is what Wikipedia says:

Craniosacral therapy (CST), or cranial-sacral therapy, is an alternative therapy used by occupational therapists, physiotherapists, massage therapists, naturopaths, and chiropractors. Craniosacral therapy was developed by Dr. John Upledger around 1983, and is loosely based on osteopathy in the cranial field (OCF), which was developed in 1899 by William Garner Sutherland. In the United States, OCF, or cranial osteopathy, as it is more commonly known, can only be practiced by fully licensed physicians (DOs, MDs and, in some states licensed naturopathic physicians, or NDs) and dentists. Cranial osteopathy is considered an extension of osteopathic medicine, and its training is therefore strictly regulated by the osteopathic medical profession and its governing bodies.[1]

The settled scientific consensus is that craniosacral therapy is pseudoscience,[2] and its practice quackery.[3] Medical research has concluded that there is no evidence for the therapy's effectiveness.[4] However, research remains ongoing[citation needed] to determine if mobility of the cranial bones exists and to determine if OCF can be shown to have any therapeutic applications.

So it seems to me that if you have had craniosacral therapy done to you and it works, great for you.  If you are considering getting it done, make sure the person has been trained to do it (i.e., with a lot of letters after their name), but don't expect miracles.

As to anyone claiming this has been influenced by Native Medicine bonesetters and is part of their shamanic healing, I would run the other way.