Craniosacral Work as a Treatment for Alzheimer’s?

Many years ago, John E. Upledger discovered and documented the existence of the craniosacral system, which comprises bone and the menengial system in the brain and spinal cord, which helps to transmit the flow of cerebrospinal fluid throughout the central nervous system.

Upledger observed that the turnover, or circulation, of cerebrospinal fluid decreases as we approach middle age, by as much as 50 percent.

Additional research found out that in people with senile dementia their flow of cerebrospinal fluid was 75 percent less than that of a healthy adult.

This would mean that as we age, due at least in part to inflammatory and other conditions caused by a diet high in excess sugar, carbohydrates or heavy metal, or even head trauma; and that insults to the brain physiology can impact the flow of cerebrospinal fluid to the brain and spinal cord.

Essentially this could mean that the brain dries up as we age, resulting in the opportunistic formation of plaques and tangles, much in the same way as the sludge and silt are deposited in a dried-up river bed.

In Craniosacral Therapy there is a technique called the still point, which was applied to initial research over 10 years ago to see if an application of this simple technique could reduce agitation, a common problem with dementia patients.

The initial theory was that this simple technique could increase the flow of cerebrospinal fluid to the brain, which would help to wash away accumulated toxins.

This simple technique was applied 10 minutes a day for six weeks and found that after about three weeks changes, including a decrease in agitation, an increase in memory and recognition of caregivers, and in most recent findings, the ability in some cases for word finding and speech to return.

In the past year, this protocol has been duplicated with a number of Craniosacral therapists around the country to see if the results can be replicated, and initial results seem to indicate that this is the case.

This brings some exciting possibilities to the area of senior care, whether someone is at risk, or in early to mid-stage dementia.

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