2020 ArticlesGillespie Approach–Craniosacral Fascial Therapy Articles

Torticollis and Sleep Issues

As a therapist, occasionally a golden clinical moment arises with a sprinkle of pixie dust in the air, where all the ducks line up, and everything seems possible. We constantly remember to play only our specific role to help the body heal itself. We realize that loose people function better than tight people.

A 6-year-old boy from a sleep doctor referral presented with sleep apnea. He also had Sandifer syndrome and torticollis as an infant and now has focus, attention and concentration issues. He had a diagnosed tongue-tie with a revision recommendation. He was ready to start orthodontics with an ALF appliance.

On evaluation, he had a zero-second brain cycle. This cycle is always my baseline starting point because it gives me an idea how well the craniosacral fascial system is initially functioning. Surprisingly, his fascial web from his trunk down was relatively quiet. But he had a nasty fascial throat and neck twist that was pulling into the floor of his mouth and tongue. Was this unresolved torticollis the core issue affecting his sleep?

As is the case with most children, the restriction of the craniosacral fascial system is at the root of many seemingly diverse conditions. Since this system is structurally connected to everything in the body, I connected all of his dots in space and time.

Therapy seemed like a magical adventure. As I was listening to soft tissues in his neck, a major twisting strain appeared. I followed that pattern, allowed it to manifest, and waited for a deep tissue release.

His world seemed to transform from darkness to light. Upon completion, I revisited the tongue fascial strain—gone. I then revisited the floor of the mouth fascial strain—gone. I checked his neck twist—gone. I measured his brain cycle—opened to an amazing 190 seconds. Wow, this one session can be a real game-changer in so many ways for him. We shall see.

As I was treating, mom asked me how many visits would be needed, and I said the usual month or two weekly sessions. After I saw how incredibly well he did, I suggested that I just check him in a few months with his ALF appliance.

As a former periodontist, I have seen the dental world differently since the 1970s. The importance of clearing the strain from the craniosacral fascial system before orthodontics cannot be overstated. Orthodontics that uses minimal forces to allow the brain to still move freely is also critical.

With torticollis, we are revisiting sustained compressive positional fetal trauma. I believe the Gillespie Approach directly at birth would have possibly changed this child’s life with the family averting six years of angst.

I thank you readers for being a part of our cutting-edge work; we are waiting for everyone else to catch up. ?

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Dr. Barry Gillespie

Dr. Barry Gillespie founded Gillespie Approach–Craniosacral Fascial Therapy, which provides patients with a freely moving brain, spinal cord and fascial web, all critical to optimal health. Dr. Barry Gillespie also created the Baby Brain Score and discovered effective therapeutic techniques for newborns and infants. Read more about Dr. Barry Gillespie.

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