resourcesABOUT MT AUTHOR GUIDELINES CLASSIFIEDS EDITORIAL CALENDAR MEDIA GUIDE MASSAGE MART SCHOOLS & EDUCATION FEEDBACK
Sleep, Less Sleep or No Sleep?
I had a dream I wasn't getting enough sleep. It was a very realistic dream, even though I was probably slightly awake and not really deep dreaming. Most likely I had been dozing, caught in that twilight of sleep and wakefulness.
Applying the Thin Skull Principle
The "thin skull" principle, also known as the "you take your victim as you find them" principle, is a legal principle that can be summed up by the following statement.
Synergy Doesn't Happen in Silos: Acupuncture in Hospitals and Other Healthcare Settings
As acupuncture and traditional East Asian medicine continue to intersect and integrate with biomedical approaches, the conversation about integration expands and becomes richer.
Recreational Cannabis Use and TCM
Many people are drawn to cannabis for its effects physically, mentally and emotionally. Medically, cannabis has some legitimate uses, however the scope of this article is limited to the recreational use of cannabis.
Talking to Patients About Lumbar Facet Denervation (Medial Branch Neurotomy)
Lumbar facet denervation, more appropriately termed medial branch neurotomy (MBN), is a procedure that may be considered when patients suffer from recalcitrant non-radicular axial back and/or leg pain.
Low Back Pain in Professional Golf: A Common Muscular Relationship
Every sport creates its own unique demands on the body. Some sports require such a myriad of body positions that assessing pathology is often difficult and unpredictable.
The Need for a New Medical Model: A Challenge for Biopsychosocial and Ecopsychologica Medicine
Chinese medicine speaks of alignment between humans, heaven and earth. It is a complex view with a focus upon relationship. These are comprehensive ideas with no specific terms in contemporary medical practice.
A Well-Kept Secret: 5 Element Acupuncture, Part II
Supervising acupuncture interns at a TCM college, it has always struck me how funny it is to hear the clinic manager tell the patients that the Five Element clinic specializes in treating emotions, as if patients with physical pain have no emotions!
Term Limits: What's in a Word?
It was the French historian and philosopher Voltaire who once declared the Holy Roman Empire was neither holy nor Roman nor an empire.
An Excerpt from TCM Case Studies: Pediatrics
This excerpt is reprinted with permission from Jamie Wu. TCM Case Studies: Pediatrics was released in 2014 by People's Medical Publishing House.
The Dietary Supplement Research Dilemma
I do not care what the truth is, one way or another; I just want to know it. And when it comes to dietary supplements, the truth can be hard to find for a number of reasons.
A View From the ER
The University of Western States has inked an innovative agreement with local nonprofit health system Legacy Health whereby UWS sports-medicine fellows can experience observational clinical rotations in emergency-room settings within the Legacy system.
TCM Congress in Rothenburg is Largest in Western World
In the medieval town of Rothenburg, deep set within the Bavarian countryside in Southern Germany, the TCM Kongress Rothenburg each year draws around 1.200 participants from more than 40 different countries to attend the biggest TCM conference in the Western world.
Optimism = Compassion = Trust
A randomized clinical trial recently published online in JAMA Oncology examined how patients viewed their doctor based upon how the practitioner presented bad news to the patient.
Converting More Patients to Your Practice
In 2013 and 2014, the theme was "the money is in the list." This meant that if you had a big email list, you were really making some "cha-ching." Unfortunately, having thousands of emails doesn't equate to thousands of dollars in profit.
There Really is No Room for Sexism
Recently, Matteo* (a transgender male) approached me during a break in an advanced shiatsu class in Berlin where he was one of two men in a group of 20 women. "Pamela. Don't forget to remind the translator to include male endings."
A House Divided?
The American Chiropractic Association's House of Delegates voted on 30 resolutions at its annual business meeting in Washington D.C., but two in particular took immediate center stage due to their controversial nature.
Functional Hip Impingement (Part 1)
Every time I sit down to write an article, I realize how much more there is to know about musculoskeletal pain. I also learn something new every time. (I want to give special thanks to Lucy Whyte Ferguson for assisting with this article.)
The Way We Are Designed: A Conversation with Gil Hedley, PhD
I was first introduced to the work of Gil Hedley by Tom DiFerdinando. He gifted me Gil's DVD series.
Treating Beyond Pain
More often than not, when a patient presents to the office, it is for a pain complaint. Headache, neck pain, low back pain, sciatica, carpal tunnel... The pain is often the focus of the patient's mindset, and they don't often have any thought of what comes after the pain.
Turning a Blind Eye to History – and Reality
The American Medical Association is taking the Supreme Court's Feb. 25, 2015 decision exactly as it always does – by turning a blind eye to history, legal precedent and reality.
July, 2007, Vol. 07, Issue 07
Autism Spectrum Disorder: How CranioSacral Therapy Can Help
By Tad Wanveer, LMT, CST-D; guest author for John Upledger, DO, OMM
Editor's note: Dr. John Upledger has asked Tad Wanveer, LMT, CST-D, to share his insights in this month's column. Tad has been the guest author for previous "CranioSacrally Speaking" columns.
CranioSacral Therapy (CST) has been shown to help the autistic individual find greater ease, both within themselves and in the world around them, by decreasing structural stress and strain on their central nervous system.
Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is estimated to affect one child in every 150 births.It's the fastest growing developmental disability, with a diagnosis rate rising 10 to 17 percent each year. ASD is considered to be a result of biological and/or neurological disorders that affect the functioning of the brain. To date, there is no known single cause of ASD.
The CST Model of ASD
Dr. Upledger's recent model of autism is based on his hands-on experience with autistic children and their responses to therapy. It's supported by research at Johns Hopkins University showing "increased levels of proinflammatory cytokines, neuroglial activation and inflammatory changes" in the cerebrospinal fluid of the autistic patients studied.1 Simply stated, ASD is partially caused by a loss of flexibility and probable inflammation of the membrane layers surrounding the brain.
This compromise can create restrictive force on the brain tissue leading to adverse strain on the internal body-regulating components of the hypothalamus, the reticular activating system and the autonomic nervous system; irritation and hypersensitivity of neurons, glial cells and neurological pathways; abnormal pressure change within the brain tissue; adverse affect on the limbic (emotional) system; over-heightened central nervous system immune response; brain tissue congestion and toxicity; and endocrine system compromise.
What is observed as typical ASD behavioral impairment in social relationships, social communication and imaginative thought might be the effects of inner chaos created by the abnormal grasp, squeeze and irritation of the membrane on the brain. Combining the extreme tension caused by an abnormally inflexible brain container with inflammation can lead to a brain confined within biomechanical and biochemical turmoil.
The CST Approach to ASD
The focus of CranioSacral Therapy is to enhance the balanced motion of:
When working with an ASD individual, the initial focus often is on the cranium to locate an area that has the greatest motion response to the craniosacral rhythm. Delicate release and pumping techniques are used to create more motion in that area.
The increased motion is used as a dynamic biomechanical tool - one hand is used to continue to increase motion and direct fluid flow, while the other hand is used to encourage motion in non-moving areas. Little by little, small changes create larger changes that enhance the mobility of the brain's container (the craniosacral system).
Increased balanced motion of the membrane surrounding the brain helps flush toxins and inflammation out of the brain tissue. As this occurs, it naturally can elevate biochemical processing, which increases the function of neurons and neurological pathways.
Newfound motion of the brain tissue and fluid helps decrease the abnormal and often enormous strain the brain has been under. This allows the brain cells a greater ability to process and react to information of all sorts. As Donna Williams states in her book, Autism: An Inside-Out Approach, "When I was an infant, my senses didn't work right and my response to light and sound and touch were not just meaningless, but too acute. I could not only, not understand the world, but I also could not stand it."2 CST gently can help the ASD person come to newfound levels of tolerance, understanding and response within themselves and with the world around them.
While this article has been focusing on the brain, CranioSacral Therapy also is directed to the whole body, since tissue restrictions anywhere can adversely affect the membrane surrounding the brain. CST helps elevate the body's natural healing and compensatory mechanisms by facilitating neurological function. This, in turn, can elevate the structure and function of the body as a whole, thereby aiding the correction of dysfunctional systems such as the digestive and immune systems that seem to often be involved in ASD.
CranioSacral Therapy also combines well with and can enhance other forms of therapy the ASD person might be using, such as sensory integration therapy, neurodevelopmental therapy, speech therapy, occupational therapy, physical therapy, diet programs, detoxification programs and homeopathy. When working with a child, it's helpful to maintain a program of consistent CST, since there is a tendency for the membrane of an ASD child to tighten as growth spurts occur.
CST Is a Sensitive Pathway to Nervous System Correction
CranioSacral Therapy gently and fully embraces each individual as unique. Through this type of acceptance, sensitive touch and delicate application of technique, pathways of change can form. CST can help the brain decrease levels of abnormal inflammation, sensation, tension, toxicity and chaos. This can lead to greater ease and efficiency of nervous system processing, which often manifests as a reduction of ASD symptoms.
Click here for previous articles by John Upledger, DO, OMM.
Tad Wanveer, LMT, CST-D, is a certified instructor for The Upledger Institute, where he was a staff clinician for more than five years. He earned his diploma in massage therapy in 1987 from the Swedish Institute of Massage and Allied Health Sciences in New York City. He currently runs a private practice in North Carolina’s Raleigh-Durham area specializing in CranioSacral Therapy.
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