Cranio-Sacral Release Technique; FM/MPS in other cultures Devin Starlanyl, M.D.

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CSR is a therapy technique which releases tightened, constricted tissue.

Studies in Israel indicate that fascia serves as an electrical conduction system.  Body fascia is a slightly mobile, body-wide laminated sheath of connective tissue.  All living beings are batteries, generators and capacitors.  People with fibromyalgia and myofascial pain syndrome suffer from sensory overload.  CSR releases the bottled up tension in the fascia, and balances the system.  Our skin holds in our electricity and protects us from environmental electricity which could interfere with our functions.

CSR is a method of restoring electromagnetic balance.  Myofascia is connective tissue that holds organ systems and musculature together, and gives the body its shape.  Through this interconnecting myofascial system, any injury or illness which results in contracture or swelling can affect the whole body.  Areas of clinically significant change can produce fascia rigidity. Any kind of scarring or adhesion can create long-standing problems in the elasticity of myofascia.  Postural dysfunction, athletic stresses, injuries and biochemical or electromagnetic imbalance will disrupt the myofascial balance.

There is material in fascia called ground substance, which changes from solid to liquid, and fascia has the ability to contract or relax. The practitioner must be relaxed and comfortable, or his or her tensions will not allow the release to occur.

CSR is based on the premise that the inherent energy that causes motion is present in the unhealthy tissue, but it is fighting against restriction. Restrictions can result from adhesions, inflammation, infection, dysfunction, or neuroreflexes.  When the restriction is loosened, it is called a release.  Often the body can’t discharge accumulated stress because there is insufficient opportunity. We tend to accumulate more energy from stressful situations than is dissipated. Any joint is a potential cross-restriction to the free movement of the fascia.  There are even three membranes around the brain which are capable of independent motion. They allow the spine to rotate and bend without stressing the spinal cord. Tennis ball compression of spinal cord is actually a form of cranio-sacral release.

The Japanese practitioners feel that the center of the FM/MPS problem is “hara”.  Hara is the center of body strength–the abdominal area, between the rib cage and the pelvic bone. “Hara guroi” is a sneaky, dishonest person.  “Hara o tateru” is an angry or upset person.  “Hara ga aru”, to have hara, describes a brave person with energy and spirit.  “Hara kiri” means to cut off the hara.  when a Japanese person is angry, he squeezes his hara to express fury and relieve it.  The Kai energy comes from the hara.

They use shiatsu and acupuncture, and herbal remedies, as well as moxibustion and electrostimulation of trigger points.  Shiatsu of hara is called ampuku.  Kenbiki (pushing and pulling) therapy is also recommended.

Dene Native Americans treat people with FM/MPS with great respect.  They are considered people with a special link to the spirit world, and they are consulted on many manners of importance. Illness is not a state of being but a process of transformation.  You must surrender–there is no way out but through.  Accommodate, and optimize life within your limitations.  Use your “down time” wisely. You will eventually be restored to harmony.  Your passage will give you a greater understanding of life, and a great deal of wisdom.  They feel you should concentrate on the discomfort instead of ignoring it, and it will fade faster.  The body is trying to teach you something.  It will try until you learn.  They emphasize creative dreaming and visualization.  If you visualize a situation you usually don’t handle well, figure out how you could do better and visualize yourself doing it.

The Chinese see FM/MPS as a disturbance of Chi.  They use herbs, acupuncture, acupressure, and equalization and balance of energies to unblock the flow of Chi.  Tai Chi is recommended.  Also walking backward, which strengthens abdominal and back muscles, quadriceps and hamstrings. They work in teams, one walking forward while another walks backward.  A strong circle of friends and family is very important.  A study at the U. of Texas School of Medicine agrees that moral support triggers the brain to release chemicals that promote healing and reduce blood pressure.

The Kahunas of Hawaii pay more attention to emotions with respect to health. FM/MPs is the self talking to self. The mind is not the brain, but the whole body, enlivening energy and correlating functions.  They use herbs to aid the process of understanding.  They believe taste and smell are the most easily conditioned senses, and often work through these for healing.  Grief is seen as positive and healthy, and separated from depression, which is negative and unhealthy.  Laughter is important in healing, as it not only provides a psychological boost but reduces stress, lowers heart rate and enhances circulation.

All of these healers expect disruption of normal body processes while healing takes place.  Long-standing toxins are liberated from trigger points throughout the body.  The liver enzymes rise as the body detoxifies.  These TPs are not only in the muscles, but in other tissues as well. They affect every part of your body.  Eating natural foods and vitamins aren’t enough when your body is clogged with toxic products.

These healers have much advice in common.  They tell their patients to avoid unnecessary changes in their lives, and simplify things as much as possible. Inventory what is important to you, and streamline your life.  They all ask their patients to learn “responsible selfishness”.  Take time to meet your own needs, and do the things you find most rewarding and fulfilling.

This article first appeared in the Fibromyalgia Magazine. Why not subscribe and receive the latest Fibromyalgia News every month?

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