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When it comes to pain relief, it’s all about the fascia.

I was chatting with a potential client yesterday about the craniosacral therapy bodywork I offer and how it relates to pain relief. To simplify, craniosacral therapy treats a) the craniosacral system, which directly affects the nervous system, and b) fascia. The pain relief which appears miraculously in some sessions is often due to a change in fascia. For example, pain in one’s hip or hands may not be affected by changes in the craniosacral system but may be drastically affected by changes in the fascia. We release the fascia as part of craniosacral therapy because the fluids in our body cannot move as designed until the fascia allows. Therefore, we could do a lot of work on the craniosacral system and only create a buildup of fluid in some areas which could create pressure or discomfort. I prefer to release the fascial diaphragms first to relax the client and the fascia then proceed to address restrictions in the craniosacral system, head, and spine.

Pain coming from the nervous system that exists within the craniosacral system (the tissues around the brain and spinal cord) are directly affected by the assessment and treatment of the craniosacral system that I do as part of craniosacral therapy. This includes symptoms related to cranial nerves, headaches, and spine and disc issues.

For more information, visit ladybug4852.com or call or text Jenny Miller, LMT at (561) 410-6113. Sessions are offered as housecalls in Palm Beach County, Florida and Martin County, Florida.

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New Years Resolutions for 2021 can be gentle and loving self-care.

I have committed to a New Year Resolution for 2021. I will be meditating in some form for 30 minutes a day. I haven’t been able to meditate since I’ve been medicated for my mental illness, which has been about five years. I’m unable to sit still as a side effect of my medication. I had been rooted in some traditional Eastern teachings that you must sit in Easy Pose (cross-legged) and focus on something with the mind while witnessing the breath and coming back to that focus repeatedly as you get distracted. Sitting in Easy Pose, with my core’s posture upright, for 30 minutes usually involves some pain in my hips. I’ve always had to move around and I’ve always felt like I was half-assing my meditations. I’m not innately a half-asser.

My therapist convinced me to find a comfortable position for my body and relax as a meditation. I’ve been experimenting with this inspiration and have been extremely successful. I’m laying in bed in Corpse Pose now allowing my legs to shift naturally into a Reclined Butterfly with my feet touching. 

I learned from Kundalini Yoga that when my eyes look down behind my cheeks and my tongue stays down in the bottom of my mouth, my energy focus in meditation moves downward towards my feet which grows roots. When my eyes are directed into my third eye and my tongue touches the roof of my mouth, my energy focus moves up toward my crown chakra where I can hear angels sing and follow my bliss.

My energy mechanism opens and I feel like I’m receiving craniosacral therapy. I feel my breath shift as my body releases deep tensions. I continually bring my focus back to my eyes and tongue, my witness to my breath. Everything the mind thinks is an illusion. It is creating thought and drama; mind is ego. I can always detach from that and return to breath and my true identity, which witnesses that breath.

Today, during a peaceful, painless meditation, I felt like a successful hedonist, completely satiated in every way. Thank you for being a blessing in my life. I am surrounded by good people and good food and so many lovely kinds of good. Thank you.

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Is Craniosacral Therapy like Reiki?

People often ask me whether craniosacral therapy is energy work. Craniosacral therapy uses light touch to make subtle movements in the craniosacral system, which is membranes and connective tissue surrounding the brain and spinal cord. We connect using intention. When you need to pick up your car keys, your mind, extremely rapidly, sets an intention to move your hand. That intention initiates a series of events that cause our movement to pick up the keys. When I place my hands on your cranium, it is my intention to connect with the skin first then connect deeper and deeper through the layers until we reach cranial membranes and the dura mater, which surrounds the brain and spinal cord.
I work extremely intuitively and my hands and the area where my hands are working, often become warm. Dr. Upledger’s teachings include energy techniques and I do often send energy into an area of the body where I am working. I wanted to take this opportunity to answer the question in greater detail, by describing the energetic mechanism I personally work with.
I use the chakra system, from Ayurvedic medicine, which aligns inexplicably with our endocrine system, to evaluate areas of imbalance. I also use my hands to connect energetically with the two extraordinary meridians of Traditional Chinese Medicine, the Du (governing vessel) and Ren meridians (conception vessel).
I personally experience the breath moving energy up and down through the chakra system. While on the table, our breath changes as we release tension. While working, my breath changes as I work energetically. I often take deep breaths while working which helps me to stay relaxed while moving energy through my hands and your body.
To summarize, craniosacral therapy, as I practice it, is a combination of energetic and mechanical bodywork.

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Craniosacral Therapy for All Ages, especially newborns

Dr. Upledger’s CranioSacral Therapy was rooted in the cranial osteopathy of Dr. Sutherland. Dr. Sutherland taught of lesions within the craniosacral system itself. Using the cranial bones like handles, we palpate the movement of the craniosacral rhythm. The rhythm moves through a normal physiological pattern of flexion and extension. When the bones do not move in that normal physiological pattern, when there is an irregularity in the pattern, we identify a “lesion” within that bone. We then release the soft tissue that is layered underneath or around the cranial bones to restore the bone to normal physiological movement.

Dr. Upledger’s later developments included fascial diaphragm releases. These diaphragms, like the respiratory diaphragm, are areas where soft tissue, held together by connective tissue, runs horizontally across the body. Releasing restrictions in these diaphragms release the connecting fascia throughout the muscles and around the spine and spinal cord, allowing the cerebrospinal fluid to move more easily from the occipital bone at the base of our cranium down to our sacrum at the bottom of our spine.

During a vaginal birth, the baby’s head is normally molded into an oblong shape to pass through the mother’s pelvis. I commonly find, in normal, healthy adults, craniosacral lesions with deep and complex restrictions layered around them. These old restrictions could have been released shortly after they occurred. Birth, even Cesarean birth, is one of our first traumatic experiences. Craniosacral theray can be given to every baby, soon after birth, to facilitate their body’s dramatic transition from liquid to air. I recommend continued craniosacral therapy throughout the child’s life, especially after a trauma. That could be a fall or accident, an illness, a surgery, an emotional trauma, like seperation or divorce, or any difficult transition.

Craniosacral therapy creates an opportunity for self-healing; for restoration and harmony. It is beneficial for alleviating pain but is more powerful when used as a tool for wellness and prevention.

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The nerves don’t touch the bones.

I am given the fortunate opportunity to discuss vertebrae frequently, as small talk. Spine issues are so common that when people find out I’m a massage therapist, they start telling me about their vertebrae, and of course their discs.

vertebra[ vur-tuh-bruh ]

noun, plural ver·te·brae  [vur-tuh-bree, -brey], ver·te·bras.Anatomy, Zoology.

any of the bones or segments composing the spinal column, consisting typically of a cylindrical body and an arch with various processes, and forming a foramen, or opening, through which the spinal cord passes.

Herniated Cervical Disc

I was chatting with a new friend last week and she was explaining her understanding: the discs between two vertebrae are bulging and pinching a nerve which causes her pain and numbness. In her case, in her neck and radiating down her arms.

I found myself, again, trying to explain simply how light-touch bodywork can affect soft tissue and alleviate that pain and numbness. The nerves don’t touch the bone. The nerves are wrapped in layers of connective tissue, called fascia. The fascia is made of elastin and collagen mostly and has a silly putty type of stretchiness to it. When you stretch gently and hold, the tissue will change to maintain the stretch. The lack we can add to the fascia around the nerves can relieve the restriction enough to diminish the pain and numbness.

This fascia, connective tissue, wraps around layers of fluid which wraps around layers of nerves. It also wraps around individual muscles, individual layers of muscles, and individual filaments of muscles. The fascia wraps around organs and all of this fascia indirectly connects to each other. This explains why a restriction released in one area of the body can affect a symptom that seems unrelated.

In summary, the nerves don’t touch the bones. The nerves are surrounded, and protected, by the craniosacral system, which consists of the fascia, membranes, and fluid surrounding the brain and spinal cord. Even if the disc is herniated, or bulging, and pressing on the nerve, that soft tissue and fluid can be rearranged without pressure.

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Coping is key.

When there is an upset or a stress, we want to control the environment; i.e. eliminate the stress. Our responsibility is to consciously realize that this is not within our control. We do not have control over our environment. Breathe into it. Cope with the stress. Many of us go literally crazy trying to keep all the loose ends of life wrapped up. It’s impossible to control all the details and, I would argue, not the best approach to begin within. You’re setting yourself up for all sorts of stress-related health conditions.

You also don’t actually have to act out the psycho-drama in your relationships to alleviate the stress. Learn to cope with the stress. Many of us find ourselves taking it out on each other. We’re stuck in patterns of argument, disagreement, dissatisfaction, or disappointment. We love each other and don’t know why we keep having the same conversations over and over again.

This pandemic, and the social distancing it requires, provides the perfect playground to practice our coping skills. Our environment is even more difficult to control than usual. The virus adds a variable that increases our health risk exponentially, thereby increasing the stress we feel about it. Those of us with children and families to protect may feel overwhelmed. We must find a way to cope.

Craniosacral therapy can help. With my subtle guidance, you can connect with an inner wisdom and sense of healing. This inner place shows us a sensation of coping that we can learn from; it provides a blueprint for calm. Using our discernment, we then apply this blueprint energetically to the current conditions we face and create plans for coping with all the stresses in our life.

Text me at (561) 410-6113 to schedule today. You deserve it.