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cranial sacral therapy

(13 Posts)
jenkins88 Tue 07-Jun-05 01:45:03

I've read a few previous posts on the sn board about this and am considering it for DS. It would depend on costs and availablity in our area, as well as other people's experiences.

This was recommended to me ages ago to help with DS plagio, but I really couldn't see how anything other than time and patience would make any difference. I think also because there are a lot of parents who feel really guilty about plagio that they are desperate for a solution and will believe anything.

I've just read the previous posts and there seems to be a lot of emphasis on it helping with speach delays, but not sure if this only helps if the delay is down to glue ear.

Would anyone be willing to give an update on how cranial sacral therapy has helped?


Davros Tue 07-Jun-05 08:59:46

Sorry for my ignorance but I don't know what plagio is. Where do you live Jenkins, so we can see if anyone knows a practitioner near you. I have been taking DD for Cranial Osteopathy due to glue ear. I can't say that I feel it has helped really but I'm still giving it a go and she likes it! Mind you, at £45 a session I will not continue to give it a go for much longer!

heartinthecountry Tue 07-Jun-05 10:21:33

If anyone lives in London or Manchester and is considering cranial osteopathy (I think cranio-sacral is similar but not quite the same) then please consider the Osteopathic Centre for Children. The London one is in Farringdon. It is fantastic. We have been taking dd there for about 2 years now.

Basically they are run as a charity so parents donate what they can afford, they ask for £30 per session as a guideline. Most of the therapists are students but they are really well supervised so your child is not at risk. Also I think most of them are students who already have a qualification in osteopathy and are doing a 2 year paediatric qualification.

For us, it has meant dd has been seen by a therapist about once a month, supervised by a therapist who specialises in epilepsy. Also, twice she has been able to see Stuart Korth who is a really top name in osteopathy (and set up the centre) at no extra charge. Really, I am a sceptic but the changes in her immediately following those 2 sessions was marked and generally it seems to just help her with her wellbeing.

I really recommend it to anyone.

jenkins88 Tue 07-Jun-05 11:22:03

Davros - plagiocephaly means asymmetric head. DS was born with this and it got worse because he only ever wanted to lay down or sit in his recliner until he started walking at 18 months. Baby's heads are really soft and pliable so it's quite normal for this to happen, but not as severely as it is with DS. You can get correction up to 18 months by repositioning them during sleep or in severe cases with a molding helmet, but a lot of parents were never told this. Sorry, I meant to explain that at the beginning of the thread.

I'd only ever heard of cranial sacral therapy for helping correct plagio in toddlers, which I dismissed as giving false hope to parents desperate to see improvement. I still really can't see how it can change the shape of a childs head. I'd never heard before about it helping with other problems though.

I've also heard that there is a link between plagio and developmental delay, but DS consultant thinks that the plagio is caused because the child is delayed and lacks motivation to move around. I had previously thought that the compressed areas of the skull could be causing some kind of problem with storing and retrieving information or something. I actually feel we've been fobbed off a bit by DS consultant. DS was born with plagio, caused by me having an odd shaped womb, so I don't see how this could be caused by developmental delay.

I live on the outskirts of London, heading towards Surrey, so if anyone knows of a really good therapist around there, I'd be grateful.

HITC - Like the sound of paying what you can afford. I could probably afford about £50 a month, but I suppose this would depend on how often he needs the sessions. Do they treat any child or does the child have to have certain diagnosis's?

heartinthecountry Tue 07-Jun-05 13:05:30

They take children with any condition Jenkins88 - right from babies who cry a lot to more severely affected children like my dd.

From what you have said I would definitely look into cranial osteopathy. I don't know masses but basically a cranial osteopath is working with the bones, tissue and fluid that surrounds the brain. I imagine that because of your son't plagio parts of his skull might be 'tight' (completely making assumptions based on no knowledge here) which can restrict the movement of fluid around the brain, which can affect all sorts of things.

Hmm, realising I am out of my depth here and possibly not explaining correctly. One of my friends is an osteopath - I'll ask her if she could explain!!

jenkins88 Tue 07-Jun-05 13:29:39

Thanks HITC. If you was to see DS with dry hair you probably would think I'm making a big fuss about nothing, but when his hair is wet it's quite shocking. I used to worry alot about it, but lately have kind of accepted it and given up feeling guilty about not getting treatment at the right time. I'm now far more concerned about the effect this distortion could be having on the development of his brain. His skull is really twisted at the back and has a huge dent at the crown. I read about some reaserch into speach delay and there was an indication that children with delays use the wrong side of their brain (or something like that). This is scaring me because DS brain is a bit all over the place. If you drew a line from the middle of his forehead to the back of his head you can see that about half of the right side is actually where the left side should be. Maybe this has nothing to do with it, but I speak to other mums online who's kids have got plagio and speach delays seem to be a common theme.

I'd be really really grateful if you could ask your friend what she thinks about this. I contacted a cranial sacral therapist a while back and she said that therapy could help improve the shape a little, but she was more concerned with treating the effects IYSWIM. At the time I was sceptical because it was another mum who had a child with plagio that recommended me. At the time I didn't realise how delayed DS speach was, and so decided against it. We couldn't reasonable afford to go ahead with treatment anyway.

BTW - is there a difference between cranial osteopathy and cranial sacral therapy?

Pages Tue 07-Jun-05 14:29:52

I have used CST for my DS who incidentally also has/had mild posterial plagiocephaly and develomental delay. I would say it is worth giving it a go. We initially took him when he was very small and had colic and it eliminated the colic within 2 sessions. It was amazing, and made a very real difference.

More recently we have taken him for his delays generally. His head shape does seem to have improved, but I don't know if that's just cos he moves around more now, though his therapist says the two sides of his brain are working together in a way they weren't previously. Obviously I only have his word for that!

I would say try it and see. It is expensive, I know.

sunchowder Tue 07-Jun-05 17:59:48

It is called Cranio Sacro Therapy in the United States. I would try it. We have used it for many things, ADD, indigestion, nightmares, vertigo, I really believe in it. I have attended the Introductory course here done by the Upledger Instititute. If you can get a practitioner that also teaches, that would be fantastic as you know that they are in the thick of things and on top of any new techniques. Recommmended Reading: Your Inner Physician and You ISBN: 1-555643-246-1 CranioSacral Therapy and SomatoEmotional Release by John E. Upledger, DO, OMM. Good Luck to you.

ck1 Tue 07-Jun-05 19:40:06

Hi - sorry to butt in, but I have a message for Pages...

I run a support website for parents of babies with plagio. Most of our parents have babies who are in helmets, and it would be great if you would join us and give us your knowledge and experiences of repositioning to help improve plagio.


heartinthecountry Tue 07-Jun-05 19:54:16

I think there is a slight difference between cranial osteopathy and cranio-sacral therapy. In the UK anyway. My friend did explain it to me and I think it was that whereas cranial osteopaths work with the bones, fluid and tissue, cranio sacral therapists only work with 2 of those (but can't remember which two) but I think they are really pretty similar. I also think my friend said that osteopaths have more training because they qualify as osteopaths first and then specialise in cranial, but I am not 100% sure on that. I guess like with many things if you get a good practitioner then there is probably no real difference.

Will try and get hold of my friend for you Jenkins.

Pages Tue 07-Jun-05 20:32:18

Hi CK1, I would be happy to help but am not really sure if I am qualified son's plagio was described as mild and probably postural (i.e. that he slept on that same side all the time) - I don't think he was born with it, or if he was noone remarked on it at the time. The neurologist and paediatrician who have dealt with him for epilepsy and developmental delay were unconcerned by it, and it was only mentioned briefly on his MRI result.
It has quite possible just resolved itself because he now largely sleeps on his front. His mRI and CAT scans were normal, and there is no structural or other abnormality of the brain.

If having read that you still want me to contribute please let me know. (I have read on NT sites of parents whose children have a mildly flat head but no underlying problems, and the doctors told me it was very common).

Pages Tue 07-Jun-05 20:38:03

PS My DS has no other unusual or dysmorphic features associated with plagiocephaly.

jenkins88 Wed 08-Jun-05 01:34:25

Pages - It's lovely to hear that your DS's plagio has improved. DS's consultant is confident that his head shape will improve too, but because it's so severe it will be a slow process.

HITC - Looking forward to hearing what your friend says. Thanks so much.

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