Karen L. Jaeger P.T.
2701 International Lane
Madison, WI 53704
The latest development in body work is an in depth focus on the brain. Advanced practitioners of craniosacral therapy, visceral manipulation and lymph drainage are studying with Bruno Chikly M.D. He is the developer of a lymph drainage curriculum. He has now developed a curriculum for therapists to learn in detail the structure and function of the brain and methods to using touch for therapeutic results.
Craniosacral therapy, lymph drainage and visceral manipulation all use the same principles of feeling, focusing and following. We have learned that by doing this we can facilitate the body to make healthy changes. We have also learned that the more we know about the structure and function of the body, the better is our focus and the larger our impact.
We have also found that taking in energy and release of tension are key components to the change process. Therapists feel this force for change as a resource whenever the situation is safe and the patient is ready. This force for change provides what is needed for release of difficult tissue memories, history of physical or emotional trauma, negative and destructive thoughts, feelings and beliefs.
Sometimes the patient will have awareness of what is releasing. Other times they remain non conscious. They are experiencing no words, no images, no senations. What is most important is that something unhealthy is loosing its power.
In this kind of body work, change is a process. It can lead to detoxification. The client might feel more fatigue or discomfort as the tissues release toxins and reorganize. It can lead to immediate or slightly delayed feelings of more energy, better health and a better ability to deal with the stresses of life. A longer process of recovery leads to layers of healing challenges.
How this relates to the brain is that the brain can be a prime location for rescue remedies as well as a holder of stress. The therapist feels directly into the brain, its nerve group and pathways, neurotransmitters, enzymes and at cells that provide structure, insulation and immune function. The therapist gains the knowledge to focus directly on parts of the brain that want attention and are ready to self correct to regain health.
As an example, let me tell you the story of one client who has agreed to let me tell her story. She is in her 50s and up until three years ago was in good health. She developed hypothyroid with symptoms of exhaustion and anxiety. She allowed me to feel into her hypothalamus, thalamus and pituitary as I gently held her head. At first I felt overwhelming tension and immobility. As I continued my focus my sense was that she was holding onto some difficult emotion. She then began to talk about what she was feeling and what she had experienced. I began to feel the emotion lift, replaced by an increased sense of vitality and flow in these brain parts.
Less than a week later, she called to tell me that she had had her thyroxin level checked. Instead of being abnormally low, it was abnormally high. Her doctor had as a result, decreased her thyroid medication. She reported continuing to feel more energized and less anxious.
My explanation at this time is that thyroid stimulating hormone is produced and enters the blood in the parts of the brain we were working. Once she could let go of the difficult emotion that was holding her hostage, she could regain normal function.
With the benefit of over a year�s hindsight, I realize that this change was a temporary event, a step in a complex process. Putting more focus on how hormones in the spinal fluid drain to the lymphatic as well as the blood, I can see that in this instance, the body experienced a healthy event. It might be that the hypothyroid problem is solved, but most likely not. Old patterns do not die easily. Continued body work along with other disciplines and interventions can work together to chip away at the problem. Chronic problems usually require ongoing attention whether they are dealth with via western medicine or alternative practices or a combination of both.
There are many similar stories. We usually don't have quick and easy before and after measurable test results to confirm change. What we do have are people reporting feeling and functioning better. As mentioned above, it doesn't always happen immediately. Years of dysfunction sometimes take trust, patience and persistence in order to gain better mental, emotional, physical or spiritual health. Body and brain work can be one key part to this restorative process.