momentIt was a dark and stormy night. It is indeed a dark and stormy night for millions of our aging population.

On this dark and stormy night we see the villain enter stage right. The villain in this play is Alzheimer’s and Dementia. Our elderly are being relentlessly attacked and invaded by this insipid villain. The elderly are losing their keys, losing their independence, losing the names and faces of the ones they love and eventually losing their precious lives. The final act of their lives is ending poorly with no sunset, only blankness, darkness, and death. This is a tragedy to rival that of Shakespeare.

Studies have shown that in Alzheimer’s and Dementia patients, inflammation in the brain may play a major part in supporting the villain. The stage director is frantic, adjusting here and moving there but alas there is no cure to rid us of the villain.

Many of us have “flown by the seat of our pants” in regards to health and eating habits much of our lives. We could eat and drink what and how much we wanted as often as we wanted. If anyone dared to tell us in our 20’s that “Hey it might not be a good idea to eat all that sugar, caffeine and animal fats”, we would have scoffed and taken the next bite. “Don’t trust anyone over 30”, right?! Well, news flash, you may very well be over 30 now and things they are a-changing. Anyone who is past a certain age can attest to that. Poor choices and habits lead to inflammation, obesity, heart problems and for some Alzheimer’s and Dementia.

Enter the hero/heroine from stage left in the form of Cranial Sacral Therapy (CST). CST is a gentle hands-on therapy that is done with the individual fully clothed in either a seated or laying position. CST works with the cerebral spinal fluid, CSF, that bathes the brain, spinal cord within the vertebral column and the cranial nerves that innervate the whole body. Hands-on CST also works with the fascia system that encompasses the body, each organ and muscle. Imagine each organ and muscle with a nice smooth cashmere sweater around it and all the sweaters are connected. Imagine if the fascia (sweater) around the right shoulder is abnormally tightened due to repetitive use, injury or trauma, the tightness will radiate and affect the rest of the body. Or if two sweaters get stuck together and not move freely, the rest of the body will be affected. CST works to loosen the fascia thus increasing the circulation of healing lymph and blood; bringing the body closer to homeostasis. Homeostasis is the state of balance in the body when all parts are functioning optimally or close to optimally. Some say homeostasis is like an engine “firing on all eight”.

We must change some of our habits. We must change how we treat our bodies and just as importantly we must change the way we treat our aging population, those in elderhood. We gently care for, feed and protect those in childhood. Adulthood is about independence and personal choices. And while each of us will strive to carry the adulthood ways deep into elderhood, not everyone is successful. We as a society must support and guide those who are struggling in elderhood. Cranial sacral therapy is one such support. The gentle, caring and focused touch of CST can bring to the third act of your life or a loved ones life peace, wellness and balance.

The government, medical community and the nursing industry also need to change. Aging is not an illness, it doesn’t need a pill and yet our elderly are the most over-medicated group in the Nation if not the world. Cranial sacral therapy offers a holistic adjunct to the aging process. As the stage director of your life or the life of a loved one, consider adding CST to the stage and watch miracles happen.

Many thanks to Ms Laura Attaway for her contribution…