The Craniosacral Fascial System in Relation to All of the Body Systems
For years I have clinically seen that newborn/infant GA (Gillespie Approach) can result in happier, healthier, stronger, and smarter babies. How can I scientifically support that statement if these qualitative factors cannot be measured quantitatively?
The key histological fact is that the ubiquitous craniosacral fascial system touches every structural cell of the body. I can hypothesize how a restricted craniosacral fascial system can adversely affect the function of each body system. Taken collectively in the following general statements, we can better understand how GA can help to transform a fussy baby into a happier, healthier, stronger, and smarter baby.
The Nervous System
The Central Nervous System
GA frees up the meninges around the brain and spinal cord to allow proper brain expansion/contraction and spinal cord movement. Dr. William Sutherland made this brain/spinal cord motion discovery in 1899 and taught the principles in the 50s to Viola Frymann, my mentor. This “breathing” allows the brain and spinal cord to function optimally.
The Autonomic Nervous System
This system runs unconscious activities like heart rate, respiratory rate, and digestion. GA frees up the fascia intertwining this system for optimal function.
The seven bones of the eye socket need to be moving well for optimal function. Fascia has many factors controlling eye function: it strains anywhere from the body into the eyes, covers each muscle cell of the six eye muscles controlling eye movement, and composes the vitreous matrix attached to the retina.
Fascial strain into the ear can affect middle ear/auditory tube function resulting in ear infections/pain. Fascial strain can also disturb eighth (vestibulocochlear) cranial nerve function resulting in balance and hearing conditions.
The Endocrine System
Fascia from the dural meninges surrounds the infundibulum or stalk of the pituitary gland. Craniosacral fascial strain here can restrict the critical hormonal messages from the hypothalamus to the pituitary gland, affecting the function of every endocrine organ.
The Digestive System
We believe that fascial strain of the organ cells can cause indigestion in our gassy babies. It can also restrict the normal peristaltic action of the alimentary tract with our constipated, colicky babies.
The Cardiovascular System
Every cardiac cell in the heart is part of the fascial web. We believe that fascial strain patterns running through the body can cause subtle pathological heart valvular changes like arrhythmias and premature ventricular contractions.
The Respiratory System
I wrote about fascial strain in the respiratory system causing asthma in the 1980s. Strain can be present from the nasal pharyngeal area down the tracheobronchial tree directly around the cells covering the air sacs into the diaphragm. Fascial stain can also restrict the function of the tenth (vagus) cranial nerve innervating the respiratory system. In my world asthma is primarily a disease of tightness.
GA can also be effective to help with sleep/airway issues and failure to thrive (suck, swallow, breathe, and speak).
The Reproductive System
We believe fascial strain can cause tightness in the reproductive organs starting clinically with teenage menstrual cramping. I believe that someday GA will be a vital part of fertility care.
The Excretory System
The Kidneys, Ureters, Bladder, and Urethra
Fascial strain touching every cell of the kidneys can cause hydronephrosis and also ureter twisting, as described from the CHARGE baby video. We also see bed-wetting children strained at birth.
The superficial fascia, directly below the epithelium, can restrict the detoxification process of the body’s largest organ.
The Lymphatic/Immune System
The craniosacral fascial web is an Internet-like communicating system containing white blood cells important to immunity. This web intertwines with the lymphatic system, which activates the immune system while draining toxins from the body.
The Musculoskeletal System
Since fascia (endomysium) covers every muscle cell in the body, GA directly affects the musculoskeletal system. So many newborns/infants/toddlers/children/adults suffer from trauma, pain, and poor physiology because of craniosacral fascial restriction.