The implications of touch are phenomenal as new research shows how light touch has a profound effect by soothing the pain of social rejection. Here is a recent study... Have you ever wondered why you may not feel like like you need specific bodywork but you just want to go lie down and have someone touch you in a neutral way? Well, it all makes sense, we need touch without an agenda, other than someone just "being" with us.
If you take this out into the larger field of awareness with what’s been happening on our planet it can be very comforting. For those groups that may feel ostracized, and not included, this is important research.
Biodynamic craniosacral therapy is a powerful tool to support those who may not feel included in our culture. The reason for this is that the relational field is the primary focus of this type of work. By the relational field we are talking about the energetic, mental, emotional, and spiritual connection that is established between the practitioner and the client. When the relational field between two people is able to settle and feel safe, profound healing occurs. When a person feels heard and seen by another in a neutral, nonjudgmental way, healing happens. This is an unusual way to connect with another person, since we often lead our relational field with our ego. In order to be a talented craniosacral therapist it requires you to have an open heart. Having an open heart creates a safe, settled, relational field. Not all of us had a consistent supportive relational field growing up. We get rewired when we are able to deepen into this type of connection with another person. It is my believe that the more we can all relate to each other in this way, it will heal the world from suffering. Much suffering has to do with splitting, denying, and separating us from each other as human beings.
As I am about to embark upon starting a new two-year biodynamic craniosacral training with another group of students I tingle with excitement! The reason for that is that I get to share what I have learned through my human existence all these years to maybe help decrease suffering. If I can help alleviate the splitting, dissatisfaction, and judgment in the relational field as a teacher and a practitioner, I will be jumping for joy.
My lineage comes from both grandmother's being Irish, one grandfather being Jewish, and my other grandfather being Portuguese. All of these parts of myself come forth in my teaching and how I am in the world. How can I judge another person’s race, sexual orientation, religion, or gender with my background as a mutt, an amalgam?
My father was the principal and superintendent of schools who tried to support interracial busing in the 1960s, my grandfather was the first Portuguese person to graduate from Gloucester high school, who went on to become a dentist; my mother got her doctorate after being widowed at 40 years old with six kids. inside of me I carry their message in my own way. Here we are again in the year 2017 facing some of the same issues that my immigrant ancestors faced nearly a century ago. The relational field needs to be strengthened on our planet!
Science is catching up to what biodynamic craniosacral therapists have known as common sense. Finally science is showing how we all need to have strong relational fields with each other. No one is perfect, but apologizing, and hearing and seeing what the person is feeling by using our mirror neurons can ultimately shift things in a big way between you and other people. If we repair conflict when we inadvertently step on someone’s toes, we can heal the world! This is a global world, we are not all operating in a nationalistic bubble, with our own race, religion, or creed. Not in America; here most of us are amalgams of all kinds of ancestry.
Ask to put your hands on someone's shoulder's, and if they let you, do it with neutrality, See what happens as your relational field strengthens and you both begin to co-regulate both of your nervous systems. Let the higher forces that really run the show do the wonderful job that they do, as you connect with someone.
Peace be with you, Dr Kate
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Pain and negative emotions activate the reward centers of the brain, causing unconscious addiction to those negative emotions.
Did you know that chronic pain, and painful emotions light up the same pathways as infamous addictive drugs do. People engage in physically or emotionally self-destructive behaviors to get an unconscious “drug” payoff from chemicals your own body creates. These chemicals that create addiction are dopamine, and beta-endorphins.
We are designed as humans to survive. When we are escaping danger, an analgesic called beta-endorphin is released to distract from the pain so you can run away. An example of the analgesic and euphoric effect of these internally made “drugs” is if you’re in pain and exhaustion while running for a long time, and you get a runner’s high, and are able to keep running for another five miles. That is when you have activated the beta-endorphin and dopamine pathways.
Another chemical your body releases is dopamine, which is called the reward neurotransmitter. It creates the AHHH feeling when someone wins at gambling, that can lead to addiction. When you’re stressed, or in a flight-or-fight situation, your brain releases dopamine. The dopamine pathway activates in drive states which are necessary for survival: such as getting away from a threat, moving towards food, and mating. Cortisol, the chief stress hormone, also mediates dopamine release.
These are the same biochemical pathways that also create emotional addiction.
Have you ever been around a person addicted to anger, or complaining? Often they vent their feelings and walk away from the conversation feeling pretty good; leaving you drained and upset. They got their dopamine, and beta-endorphin fix, and you got vampired.
You also may know people who systematically sabotage their own happiness: by being habitually late; by engaging in self-pity; by putting themselves down, or seeing the worst in everything and everyone.
Cell receptor sites in our body are that are related to those kinds of emotions get linked with dopamine and beta-endorphins. These receptors are addictive because certain emotions can create a release of these compounds. When the habitual emotion occurs there is a chemical high related to it. An emotional habit is an addiction. If a person seems to always have a habitual emotion response to lots of things, there is usually an emotional addiction happening.
How can we stop emotional addiction?
There is a detox period for your neurology to return to normal. The receptors, neurotransmitters, vesicles, and reuptake mechanisms involved need time to stop their biochemical habit. This physiological rearrangement takes 7-21 days to get off the emotional/physiological addiction. During this crucial time you must get yourself away completely from the noxious behavior and its triggers. Two weeks of detox is a good rule of thumb.
How to Heal? Long term changes are needed.
The reward centers of the brain are “pleasure centers,” so it makes sense when someone gets addicted to cocaine, or crack. Because these things can make your brain light up, makes you high, and then you want more. If you follow the impulses to use in these substances it will create a physiological addiction.
That’s the addiction that people know. But you don’t need cocaine, or meth, or crack to create a self-reinforcing addictive circuit in the brain. Anything that activates the beta-endorphin or dopamine pathways will activate these addictive pathways.
It turns out that pain and negative emotions (e.g. self-pity, anger, guilt) also activate the beta-endorphin and dopamine pathways. Chronic jaw pain, or painful thoughts, and feelings, light up the same pathways as infamous addictive drugs do.
As a result, we can get addicted to negative emotions. We always can choose how we want to “be” with our emotions. Slowing things down by taking a break, orienting to a resourceful thought in our minds eye, noticing the feeling coming up and pretending the feeling in our minds eye is far away on another planet. All these things can help you stay regulated and break the addiction. It is important to practice self regulation of your emotions regularly as they will continue to arise. The more you learn to regulate your emotions, the easier it gets. However not too different from exercising regularly you have to always practice emotional regulation. These are ways you can self regulate your emotions so that you are not hijacked by your physiology. I am sure there are even more options that I have not even listed.
The prefrontal cortex is what mindfulness meditation develops and strengthens.
Breaking your emotional addiction requires you to focus on your deepest values rather than feelings. Even though feelings are powerful and enticing, they can throw your nervous system, and physiology out of whack. Just remember feelings are not facts. Watch and observe feelings that tend to arise often. They could be an addicition.
When our prefrontal strengthened it creates more bliss. That is the reward that we are aiming for. We all have two hungry “wolves” inside of ourselves. Do we feed the angry/lonely/sad wolf, or the Okay/happy wolf? We do have a choice. We are not just a victim of our chemistry. We can feed either wolf, but one creates a lot more suffering. Feeding your inner wolf that is regulated will strengthen the prefrontal cortex and create more bliss.
Recently in the past 10 years science has showed a whole new understanding of how the brain cleans itself. What has been discovered is that the brain has a lymphatic system, as well as a Glymphatic system. The lymphatic system carries lymph fluid which is connected to our immune system and detoxification. The Glymphatic system contains the fluid area between astrocyte cells and cappillaries, called the interstitial space, The glymphatic system does not contain lymph fluid. Astrocyte cells of the brain cover approximately 99 percent of all cerebral capillaries . This is a slow clearance of fluid in the central nervous system that removes interstitial fluid (assumed to be CSF), as well as waste products. One of the well known waste products is amyloid beta protein and if that builds up in your brain it is associated Alzheimer’s disease.
Two separate teams of researchers; one team at the University of Virginia, and one team at the University of Helsinki in Finland, independently found lymph vessels in the brain. These vessels, which line the dural sinuses in the brain, carry lymphatic fluid (and immune cells) toward deep nodes of the neck (cervical lymph nodes). It is likely that the Glymphatic system drains the waste from the brain on a more cellular level into the brain's Lymphatic system, to then drain into the lymphatics of the whole body.
What else is interesting is that they have found that Cerebrospinal fluid is absorbed and reabsorbed through the capillaries, and not so much the choroid plexus as thought before. Capillaries are everywhere, and surround the ventricles inside the brain, and the brain itself.
Maiken Nedergaard of the University of Rochester Medical Center identified a system of hydraulic “pipes” running alongside blood vessels in the mouse brain carry cerebrospinal fluid around the brain, and that the fluid enters inter-cellular spaces in the brain tissue, picking up waste on its way.
Nedergaard and her colleagues also discovered that proper function of these vessels depends on movements of water around the brain, which are carried out by glial cells called astrocytes, and therefore named them the glymphatic system. They went on to show that inter-cellular spaces expand by up to 60% in the brains of naturally sleeping mice, as well as mice under anesthesia, and that this expansion drives the clearance of waste from the brain.
Researchers from the University of Virginia identified of lymphatic vessels in the central nervous system that extend into the dura mater, the thickest and outer-most of the three meningeal membranes that envelope the brain and spinal cord. These vessels run parallel to the major veins and arteries, and split to send branches deep into the brain’s crevices. The researchers believe that they could be linked to the glymphatic system, and may be the second stage of the disposal mechanism, which would transport waste out of the brain and spinal cord altogether.
Why is all this cellular detail important to us?
This new research is clarifying connections with understanding brain health and disease. In the case exercise it would explain the influence of exercise on brain health. By increasing circulation from exercise we can expedite elimination of waste products in the brain.
Using your brain for new learning creates new pathways; which help your brain, as blood supply follows brain usage. Craniosacral therapy sessions that augment exhalation and inhalation still points could have powerful results from the inside out. The ventricles/ caves in our brains are lined with capillaries. So this could quite possibly enhance the exchange of glymphatic fluid, and Cerebrospinal fluid. It has recently been discovered that cerebrospinal fluid is absorbed and reabsorbed from capillaries. In terms of concussions and traumatic brain injuries it is highly likely that craniosacral therapy enhances the cleaning of the byproducts of cellular damage from injury.
Maybe we can reach out to Dr Nederguuard to see if she would like to do a study on craniosacral therapy!
Dr Nederguuard's Research Studies showed that Good Sleep and Sleeping on your side increase the opening and flow of the Glymphatic system by up to 60%:
Here are other activities that support optimal brain health:
AN ARTICLE FROM DR MERCOLA, DO... HE COULD NOT HAVE SAID IT BETTER:
Chronic pain is an exceedingly common condition impacting an estimated 76.5 million Americans, one-third of whom describe their pain as severe and "disabling".i
Among them, many suffer from neck pain, which is the third most common type of pain according to the American Pain Foundation.
It is estimated that 70 percent of people will experience neck pain at some point in their lives but research into effective treatments is surprisingly limited.ii
If you visit a conventional physician for pain, there's a very good chance you'll leave with a prescription for a medication,as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), acetaminophen (Tylenol) and even opioids (OxyContin, Vicodin, etc.) are the go-to treatment for pain in the modern medical world.
However, there are better options than drugs for neck pain, not only in terms of pain relief, but also in helping to treat the underlying cause of the pain so that healing can truly occur.
New Study Shows Exercises and Chiropractic Care Beat Drugs for Neck PainAccording to a new study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine and funded by the National Institutes of Health, medication is not the best option for treating neck pain.
After following 272 neck-pain patients for 12 weeks, those who used a chiropractor or exercise were more than twice as likely to be pain free compared to those who took medication.
"For participants with acute and subacute neck pain, SMT [spinal manipulation therapy] was more effective than medication in both the short and long term. However, a few instructional sessions of HEA [home exercise with advice] resulted in similar outcomes at most time points."
Why Exercise is Essential if You Have Neck PainBecause exercise often leads to improved posture, range of motion and functionality of your body, it can help treat the underlying source of your pain as well as help prevent chronic neck pain from developing in the first place. Exercise helps prevent and relieve pain through a number of mechanisms including strengthening key supportive muscles and restoring flexibility.
Not surprisingly, repetitive strain injuries have become increasingly common as so many people spend most of their work days sitting in front of computers. Computer work is associated with neck pain specifically originating from the trapezius muscle, also referred to as trapezius myalgia, and many types of neck pain can be traced back to poor posture at work or during your commute.
It's a vicious cycle as poor sitting posture leads to neck pain and once neck pain develops, it can make your posture even worse. For instance, one study showed people with chronic neck pain demonstrate a reduced ability to maintain an upright posture when distracted.iii
The same study further revealed, however, that after following a specific exercise program, people with neck pain had an improved ability to maintain a neutral cervical posture during prolonged sitting, which suggests it may help break the poor posture/neck pain cycle. Other research has similarly shown that exercise is incredibly beneficial for treating neck pain including:
As a general rule of thumb, increase the weight as soon as you can comfortably execute all three sets. As a guideline, the participants in the study roughly doubled the weight used in 10 weeks. After approximately four weeks, you can reduce the number of repetitions of the last sets in order to increase the weight.
The Benefits of Chiropractic Care and Other Alternative Treatments for Neck PainSeeing a qualified chiropractor is another wise option if you suffer from chronic pain. I am an avid believer in the chiropractic philosophy, which places a strong emphasis on your body's innate healing wisdom and far less reliance on Band-Aids like drugs and surgery. Chiropractic, Osteopathic, and Naturopathic physicians receive extensive training in the management of musculoskeletal disorders during their course of graduate healthcare training, which typically lasts from 4-6 years.
Due to their comprehensive training in musculoskeletal management, numerous sources of evidence have shown that chiropractic management is much safer and often more effective than allopathic medical treatments, particularly for back and neck pain. In addition, researchers have also found that chiropractic adjustments affect our bodies on a deep cellular level.
What that means is that chiropractic care may affect the basic physiological processes that influence oxidative stress and DNA repair, so in addition to addressing any immediate spinal misalignment that might cause pain, it can also address deeper dysfunction in your body.
As many of you know I am an osteopathic physician. DOs, like chiropractors, also receive extensive additional training in spinal adjustments and may also be a good option for you. However, in my experience, only a small percentage of DOs are skilled in this area as they have chosen a more conventional allopathic model. So if you see a DO for this make sure they provide this service.
Overall, the important point to remember is that there are many other options for treating chronic pain than drugs. For instance, therapeutic massage has been found to offer clinically significant improvement in function and symptoms for those with neck pain,vii while a variety of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) treatments (including acupuncture, massage, spinal manipulation, and mobilization) were deemed to be significantly more efficacious than no treatment, placebo, physical therapy, or usual care in reducing pain immediately or at short-term after treatment for those with neck or low-back pain.viii
So you have options when it comes to dealing with your pain, and there is good reason to explore them before you opt for medicated relief. Additionally, many massage and physical therapists can provide effective alternatives.
Pain Medications are Risky at BestMillions of Americans depend on anti-inflammatory drugs to relieve pain, but the drugs are among the most dangerous on the market. Aside from significantly increasing your heart risks (such as a two to fourfold increase in the risk of heart attacks, stroke or cardiovascular death), NSAIDs are linked to serious gastrointestinal risks like bleeding of the digestive tract, increased blood pressure and kidney problems. Remember, this applies not only to prescription medications like Celebrex but also to over-the-counter drugs like aspirin, Advil and Motrin.
It's very difficult to find a drug-based method of pain relief that is not saddled with severe side effects. The FDA has even recently limited the amount of acetaminophen allowed in prescription products and added a boxed warning due to liver toxicity concerns. Acetaminophen is actually the leading cause of acute liver failure in the United States.
As for the opioid painkillers like OxyContin, they are among the most commonly abused prescription drugs and are a leading contributor to the rising rates of fatal prescription drug overdoses. Many become addicted after using them to treat conditions like back or neck pain.
But no matter what type of painkiller you choose, the bottom line to remember is that they do not come without risks! Unfortunately, if you visit your conventional physician with chronic pain, a long-term treatment plan will typically include a drug-combination approach, using anti-inflammatory drugs, anti-seizure medications, muscle relaxants and possibly other types of pain medication as well. In other words, the answer for pain relief is drugs, drugs and more drugs -- each one raising your risk of suffering potentially lethal side effects. Is there a better way?
More Natural Solutions for Neck (and Other Types of) PainIn the case of neck pain, the underlying cause is often related to body mechanics, meaning your posture or muscle balance is off kilter. Addressing your posture (or other factors that may be contributing to the strain, such as sleeping in an awkward position) and treating the condition with exercises is often effective at relieving the pain and addressing the underlying cause. If you have chronic pain of any kind, please understand that there are many safe and effective alternatives to prescription and over-the-counter painkillers, though they may require some patience.
Among the best are:
What is Cox Flexion Distraction?
Using flexion distraction, Dr. Kate will gently and carefully adjust your spine so that it can heal naturally. Created with the ideas of both chiropractic and osteopathy, this method offers relief quickly from lower back and leg pain and may help you avoid surgery. Most patients report that it actually feels quite good, and that relief is pretty immediate as far as the pain they were experiencing before the treatment. If patient's do not improve at least 50% in 4 weeks Dr Kate will refer the patient to see a specialist for a potential steroid shot, or surgery. The way you know you are getting better is that the pain begins to become more localized in just your back, and not down your leg. The worst level of pain is when pain is only felt in the leg and not the back. The next worst level is low back and leg pain, and the least serious pain is when the pain is only in the low back. Things that are helped are disc degeneration, disc herniation's, spinal stenosis, osteoarthritis of the spine, and scoliosis.
What Cox Flexion Distraction Can Do for You
The objective of this therapy is to expand the space between the bones in your spine by applying mild stretching or traction of the lower back. The moving parts of the table allow Dr Kate to separate the different areas of the spine, and this allows for an increase of disc space between the bones in your back. This reestablishes precise alignment of your vertebrae and increases range of motion that you may have previously lost.
What’s great about this technique is that it uses gravity as well as mild manipulation to move your spine through a normal range of motion. There are no quick thrusts or extreme pressure, and you will feel instant relief from this treatment. In fact, this method has been recognized to decrease pressure within the discs of the spine, expand the spinal canal, improve posture, diminish pressure on spinal nerves, promote better circulation and advance communication between the nerves of the spine. This results in less pain for you as well as a higher level of overall wellness.
Dr Kate has helped patients with bowel constipation that is caused by spinal stenosis, eliminated leg and back pain. People usually need to come in twice a week for about 4 weeks to see results. This table is also a safe way to combat the degenerative changes that occur over time as we age. It restores the natural full range of motion, which slows down the aging process. Patients that are older than 60 are often helped the most when there are few options other than surgery; this is because Dr Kate is a conservative Chiropractor who does not recommend using high velocity thrusts on their spine. The table actually decreases disc pressure up to 240 pounds per square inch. Much research has been done by Dr Cox, who is one of the originators of this technique who started practice the year Dr Kate was born. Come on in and give it a try!
Lets talk about Meniere's
It is kind of a nightmare. Imagine that you cannot go anywhere as the world would spin like a top inside your head...
Symptoms of Meniere’s disease include:
Recently I had a lovely patient who was unable to go out in public because her Meniere's symptoms were so bad. We made huge dietary changes towards a paleo-mediterranean/ low inflammatory diet, and a methylation nutrition protocol. I supported her system in clearing toxins, repairing her gut, and feeding her cells good nutrition and supplements. She also continued on with biodynamic craniosacral therapy which was incredibly helpful. There was a lot going on with her, but she prevailed, and kept on with our work. It has not even been a year and she is doing much better. Her husband drove her two and a half hours to get treatments. I have never met such kind spirits. There was stuff going on with her cerebellum, fourth ventricle, as well as a great need for settling. She is responding quite well, and understands that it was not going to be a quick fix pill situation. In the first few visits we worked on the floor as being up on the table was a bit too scary with the severe vertigo. Now for the first time she can lie down on the table!
I wanted to share this story because there is help for Meniere's. Never give up if you have this and have not had any relief. As a practitioner I stay present and orient to what arises nutritionally through applied kinesiology, as well as in the cranial territory of being with a person's system. I know I am a different sort of practitioner with the treatments that I combine. I am noticing in my practice that adding nutrition and supplements to my brain, nervous system, and mind body oriented practice of craniosacral therapy has vastly improved patient relief of various health concerns.
I truly love my work, and probably will never retire unless dealing with running a business becomes a complete killjoy. Patients like these are a gift, and they are who I was put on earth to work with. I was also put on earth to teach as I have a different perspective on health that can be breath of fresh air for those that have not yet found their health. When you find your heart, you will find your health. Get your stinking thinking out of the way, open your heart, and listen. Each day you will learn something new. We need both science and intuition.
In Health, Dr Kate
Understanding What Pain Does…
Pain on a physical or emotional level causes us to go into protective mode. We seize up around our pain. Pain causes fragmentation, encapsulation, and our life force is drained to contain the suffering. This is a good thing for our system to do for a short time. It helps the suffering be less overwhelming. Yet, over the long haul, this way of dealing with pain is no longer helpful. We stop functioning at our maximal potential. We become less coherent on a quantum/energetic level, and this shapes our tissue/structure over time. We are all part energy, and part matter. The energy that breathes us is intelligent and directs all of our cells to do their job.
How does craniosacral help pain?
Craniosacral therapy supports a unified, coherent, mind-body field that helps us orient to health rather than suffering. On a daily basis the more still we become, (less active monkey mind), the more coherence occurs. The more coherence we have creates more access to our inherent health and higher intelligence. That is why it is important to have time in your life each day if only for a few minutes to increase a quiet mind and create more energetic coherence.
Illness begins on any level of health:
Chemical= nutritional imbalances and toxins from air, water, and food
Structural= Imbalances in our structure (especially along the spine) can affect sympathetic nerves that influence our organs, lymphatics, blood supply, and nerves of the musculoskeletal system. This depletes our body’s energy to maintain optimal posture.
Energetic= this can be chronic exposure to EMF’s from: cell phones, wifi, etc…
Emotional= especially early events have a strong imprint on our neurochemical habits and pathways affecting our brain and entire cellular matrix. This is a huge part of health and wellness. Learning to work with emotional self regulation is optimal to staying healthy.
Craniosacral helps with the overall coherence of the body to increase health. In combination with this powerful work I also check the layers above and treat and refer accordingly. Often people need support on more than one layer at a time. My goal is to help them figure out where the health issue is coming from. Symptoms are not always where you would think they are coming from. Chinese medicine is 5000 years old and clearly states that. I will point you in the best direction for the quickest healing. When someone comes in with symptoms that persist, after getting treatments from other practitioners that is a flag for me that the kind of treatment was done well, but did not target the core problem. With chronic pain there is usually a perfect storm with pieces of a puzzle that brought their system out of coherence.
Fritz Popp speaks of coherence, and has studied health with respect to biophotons. He is a German Physicist: http://www.biontologyarizona.com/dr-fritz-albert-popp/
In Health, Dr Kate
Forgiveness, how we can get all of our energy back.
Holding grudges keeps your life force energy bound up in the past.
It affects your health in many negative ways, and can be the root of a disease process. This is one of the most obvious reasons to forgive: for your health and happiness. Forgiving is not the same as forgetting. Forgiving is letting go of bitterness and resentment, and changing your relationship to what happened. By changing how you carry and connect with what disturbed you, you are able to move on with your energy and reclaim your life force. Forgiveness is not rooted in making the person who judged, abused, or hurt you change. Forgiveness is acknowledging the pain and suffering you feel. Wouldn’t you like to have all of the energy that is meant for your body to be there to support your cellular function? Sometimes forgiving needs to be done on a regular basis to train our mind to not get stuck on the resentment or bitterness “radio station”.
Resentments are literally held in the tissue: the spiritual, emotional, physical, and mental body. In the long haul grudges end up hurting the people who harbor them.
Here are some quotes from Carolyn Myss to inspire you:
"When we harbor negative emotions toward others or toward ourselves,
or when we intentionally create pain for others,
we poison our own physical and spiritual systems.
By far the strongest poison to the human spirit
is the inability to forgive oneself or another person.
It disables a person's emotional resources.
The challenge is to refine our capacity to love others as well as ourselves
and to develop the power of forgiveness.”
"Forgiveness is no longer an option
but a necessity for healing."
"The soul always knows what to do to heal itself.
The challenge is to silence the mind."
~ Caroline Myss ~
Here is what I do to forgive myself and others: