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Integrated Craniosacral Therapy

A Balanced Body Heals Better


Inside the Dura


Complex Systems

require a special Therapist...


The CranioSacral System, while not well understood by the public, plays a vital roll in our ability or inability to function and maintain health.  A Therapist's training & experience is most important in achieving desired treatment results.


Each therapy offered by SafranTherapies has its own unique value in effectively treating a Chronic Condition.  No one technique does it all.  Therapies & techniques need to be employed in complementary and orderly ways.  CranioSacral Therapy may be very much needed... but, perhaps only after the system has been prepared to receive its benefits.


A highly trained & experienced therapist is the key to getting the most value & benefit from treatment sessions.  The CranioSacral System is complex, and has numerous therapeutic relationships with other parts of your body.  Your Therapist needs to be able to feel & understand physical & energy restrictions... relationships between body parts... and be able to translate that information into more promising treatment strategies.  Joel Safran is that kind of a Therapist.


Where Restrictions begin or end...


Our Cranium consists of 22 bones articulating with one another in hundreds of ways.  Within our Cranium is the "Head Quarters" of our Central Nervous System... consisting of our Brain... all its specialized parts... Cranial Nerves...  specialized Glands... and more.  All of this is contained within a Membranous / Meningeal sack called the "Dura".  That fibrous sack lines and attaches more specifically to the inner surfaces of Cranial Bones.


The Spinal Cord is the continuation of the Brain into your body.  It too is contained inside of the continuation of the "Dura".  Except for a couple of attachments at the top and the bottom... the Dural Sack 'free falls' down the Spinal Canal... and then attaches to the Sacrum.  Spinal Nerves emerge from the Spine in order to supply numerous nerve functions to specialized body tissues... like muscles, circulatory vessels, organs, glands and so on. These become areas that most people complain about and label as "their problem".  So, as you can imagine, "this anatomy" is very complex, specialized and highly integrated with your "whole" body.


Three Skull Views

Bone & soft tissue restrictions can originate in the Cranium... and cause distortions below to the Sacrum and Pelvic Bones.  Or just the reverse can occur when restrictions & fixations originating from below... can eventually cause distortions and conditions on the way up to the head.  The "three skull" image above shows some of the unusually shaped cranial bones and the numerous ways in which they articulate.  Restrictions often are quite complex.  A highly trained and experienced therapist like Joel Safran can properly evaluate and work with these relationships and the resultant Chronic Conditions these restrictions create.



Physiology of the CranioSacral System...


Life is mostly defined by mental, motion and functional abilities.  The more free and full our motions, the greater the level of quality in our life and health.  The whole Central Nervous System greatly benefits from "enhanced motion" because the CranioSacral System is basically a "pump".  It goes through pumping cycles of "Flexion & Extension" that cause red arterial blood entering the Cranium... to be filtered and refined into clear "CerebroSpinal Fluid (CSF).  This is "the food" (nutrients) required by tissues and structures within the Dural Tube.  It is required in order to maintain the health and functions of these highly specialized tissues.  If the Central Nervous System is strong & healthy, it is more likely to support the rest of the body in being healthy & strong as well.Skull facing left


After the blood is refined, the CerebroSpinal Fluid gets pumped through the structures of the Head... then along the Spinal Cord to the Sacrum... then back up to the Brain... where it returns to our Circulatory System.  This process is repeated over and over until we die.  This pumping process continues 8-12 times per minute.  The fewer and longer the cycles per minute, the stronger and healthier will be our Central Nervous System.  And we as a whole, will be healthier and function better as well.


Bear in mind that the Brain requires 750 ml of oxygenated blood every minute in order to maintain normal activity.  As the CranioSacral System's cycle rhythm and range of motion becomes stronger and more balanced, the system is more capable of producing CerebroSpinal Fluid... and maintaining its ability to optimally function.


The Skull image does not show all the intricacies of the inside.  Yet try to imagine the affect of dysfunctional torques & tensions on the inside... and how it will not only distort the bones of the Cranium and the Jaw... but all the way down the Spine.  Imagine how it will twist the Rib Cage, the Shoulders, and the Pelvis, and so on.


Membranous / Meningeal Techniques...


These techniques focus on releasing & balancing tissue restrictions that attach inside the Cranium and inside the Spinal Column at the Sacrum.


The vast majority of CranioSacral Therapists only provide this type.  Joel Safran is highly trained in both types of CranioSacral Therapy.



Structural / Sutural Techniques...


These techniques focus on releasing sutural tissue restrictions between the Cranial Bones.



Both approaches complement each other...


They both address different kinds of Cranial & Sacral restrictions.  Used together, they facilitate the increased production and motion of fluids.  People with Chronic Conditions most often present the result of complex layers of Physical Trauma.  Life is a bumpy ride on a rocky road for many of us.  therefore, I have found that the Structural / Sutural techniques tend to be most necessary in effectively dealing with the "old stuff" that has been compensating and creating restrictions in our body.  Treatment requires attention to details, skill, persistence... and "out of the box" thinking, evaluation and treatment planning.


Once these restrictions begin to normalize, I will use the Membranous Techniques more.  The goal is to improve Structural Integration of the body as well as function.  It is necessary to work with a body as it presents itself to the Therapist.  As we are able to work more with the Membranous Tissues, the patient will feel a deep sense of relaxation.  This is because we are empowering the ParaSympathetic Nervous System... which enables rest and regeneration so your body can recover and heal.  At the same time we are quieting the Sympathetic Nervous System... which has more to do with the "fight or flight" part of our stressful world.  As the ParaSympathetic Nervous System is empowered, people experience a deep calm, peaceful, relaxing feeling.  Because of this, quite often people doze off.


Below are examples of different spinal distortions...  lateral sidebending, right & left rotational curves... and forward & backward bending that develops into Lordosis & Kyphosis conditions.  They can further develop into problems affecting our internal Organs, Glands and their supporting structures.  Imagine how these curve and bending distortions can affect body areas from head to toe...  our Jaw...  our Ribcage...  our Spine...  our Hips...  as well as the shape of our Head.  Our body is a highly integrated unit.  Distortions in one part do affect other areas as well.

Scoliosis Lateral Curves     Forward - Backward Bend

Scoliosis and other twists & turns...


Scoliosis and other structural distortions are usually a result of imbalances within the CranioSacral System.  A twist or torque of the Cranial Bones also twists & torques the membranous sack (the Dura) that courses from the Cranium...  through the Spinal Canal...  and then to its attachments on the Sacrum.  It is all linked together by the Dural Tube & Sack like a puppet controlled by strings.


Lateral and/or rotational curves in the spine & body then begin to form from these unbalanced pressures.  The Shoulder & Arms and the Hip & Legs also will become structurally distorted.  The Head & Jaw also becomes distorted.  Releasing these restrictions begins the process of regaining the more normal "Structural Integration" of the body.  After that, we need to support the body as it regenerates toward a more balanced structure.  We need to look beyond what we see in order to understand what is really happening... and how we can reverse the process.



Migraines...  Headaches...  Internal Pressures...


If blood flow to the Head is unable to fully return to the body, pressure will increase within the Cranium.  Cranial Nerves will become pinched internally, which will contribute to various head conditions... such as:

Headaches...  Ringing in the Ears...  Feeling of 'fullness in the Head'...  "Aura" type issues such as flashes of light, speech difficulties or losses of taste, smell... or memory issues.


Generally conditions may be further complicated by tightness in the Neck & Shoulders.  As root cause areas are normalized, conditions greatly subside.  We need to think and treat globally in Wholistic ways.



TMJ  Disorders...


For the most part, TMJ disorders are the result of structural distortion.  The Jaw is generally not the main problem... even though there may be discomfort and greatly reduced Cranial Bone motion in the whole Head.  Usually there are structural distortions & restrictions regarding articulations between Cranial Bones.  But, in many cases, TMJ disorders seem to also be related to restrictions associated with the Sacrum and Lumbar Vertebral Spine.


Long term physical trauma that has occurred from an accident or even from birth, often seems to be another root cause.  After many years of the compensation process, people begin to experience more complex Jaw issues and as well as lower body issues... even if they are unaware of this subtle progression.  Proper CranioSacral Therapy means that a well a well trained Therapist must work with both the Cranial and Sacral areas... and quite often what is in between these areas as well.

Other Structural Condition Examples...


Eye turned toward Nose

"Click Here" for WordPress Journal article regarding this.

A child's eye was angled toward her nose as a result of a fall and injury to her Head.  CranioSacral Treatments were able to restore proper function to the Cranial Nerves controlling her eye movements.


Chiari Malformation Disability

"Click Here" for WordPress Journal article regarding this.

A portion of the Cerebellum descends into the Spinal Canal.  Nerves were pinched, flow of CerebroSpinal Fluid was reduced, basic functions like walking, co-ordination, swallowing, breathing, etc. became problematic.  Joel Safran figured out how to treat this condition in a non evasive way.  The patient then regained her life.


Structural Birth Deformities

Through the understanding of the inter-cranial forces, appropriate treatment strategies are possible.  In any case, the possibility of the treatment harming your child is virtually none.


...and there are other examples and resolution possibilities...

We just need to find & remove restrictions... so that we can "Fix the Pump"... and enable the CranioSacral System to work better for you.



The CranioSacral System supports the functions of our Central Nervous System in many ways.  Therefore, chronic conditions associated with it can be described as Structural, Neurological, Physiological, Behavioral, Emotional... and in other ways affecting our abilities... and our reactions to life.


The few examples listed below will begin to describe the wide range of possibilities and benefits.  Please do not  limit yourself to the potential benefits a person could experience once their "pump is fixed".

Motor Co-ordination - Balance - Dexterity

Speech & Voice difficulties

Memory & Learning Difficulties

Autism - Attention Deficit - Behavioral issues

Emotional - Anxiety - Depression - type issues

Effects of Compromised Cranial & Systemic Nerves

Altered "Sense" abilities - sight, smell, taste, hearing, touch

Parkinson's and other Neurological "Diseases"

Stress & ongoing emotional tension issues


and the inability to

Relax...  Rest...  Regenerate...

and "really" heal your body

Peaceful  Well  Being  Promotes  Good  Health


Sitting on Dock

During and after CranioSacral treatments, people generally mention how relaxed it makes them feel.  Sometimes, they doze off during the treatment because it is so very calming.  Treatments not only remove structural restrictions, they also increase the strength and balance of the CranioSacral System.  This provides patients with a welcomed feeling of stress & tension removal.  Treatments in a sense, are "turning on" the ParaSympathetic Nervous System to a greater and more healthy level.


A quiet mind which is at peace... is a healthy mind capable of much more.  It is nice to be surrounded by beauty & nature.  That feeling of peace & power & productivity is also possible in large metropolitan communities.  We just need to learn how to make it so... and support the process that make it so...  with the right Therapist who helps make it so.

Its all about enabling more Movement & Flow in your life...


"Worms will not eat wood where the vital sap is flowing,

Rust will not hinder the opening of a gate when hinges are used each day,

Movement gives health and life.

Stagnation brings disease and death".


        - proverb in traditional Chinese Medicine - 

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