Craniosacral therapy (CST) for infants is an alternative method of treatment that uses important pressure points in the cranium to help treat imbalances via gentle massaging of those points. This practice isn’t the same as acupuncture or Eastern practices of pressure points, but it sounds similar and works as an alternative treatment that, in theory, can help with overall circulation and encouragement of health and wellness.
This is not generally used as a treatment that takes care of just one affliction or one very specific situation. This is an alternative treatment that generally looks at the “general health” side of things. CST treatments are popular with some parents because of anecdotal evidence regarding their effectiveness, and gentle massage and human contact can have a lot of benefits for infants.
However, when it comes to getting a clear answer on the full picture of how CST works and its overall effectiveness, things are much murkier.
Brief History of CST
The beginning of CST goes back to the 1930s and the work of William Garner Sutherland, who focused on osteopathy when dealing with the skull and cranium area. While this might be the roots, as a widespread practice, the modern form of CST didn’t reappear in strength until the 1970s due to the work of John Upledger, D.O.
The idea was that with the brain being so important to all parts of the body, it made sense to use non-invasive gentle massage and pressure treatments that would help to relax those areas and make sure that there were no fluid build-ups that could cause a variety of issues in the body.
While this was used in adults at first, the fact that the practice is patient and gentle led to it becoming a favorite of many alternative medicine advocates for patients of all ages, including newborns.
This isn’t to say that craniosacral therapy for infants isn’t completely without controversy of any kind. CST isn’t widely accepted by the medical community, and it is distinctively seen as a form of alternative medicine. Many medical doctors view it as pseudoscience or pseudo-medicine at best, and maybe even a sham at worst. However, there are those in the field who say that, although this practice might not be along the lines of traditional Western medicine, there is plenty of anecdotal evidence to show it can be a great treatment that promotes overall health and wellbeing.
Technical Issues with Court Cases
One of the major issues that will come up with craniosacral therapy for infants in relation to any medical malpractice case is that CST treatments are firmly considered alternative medicine. The problem here is that when you’re dealing with getting a settlement from a case or hoping to ride the entire trial out for a final judgement, there is virtually no chance that CST treatments will be included under the general umbrella of necessary medical expenses, unless you can get it specifically listed and included.
This is more likely to happen in a settlement situation. However, if you really are behind the benefits that CST might be able to offer, you may still find yourself having to pay for those treatments out of whatever bulk sum settlement you can manage from a trial.
When looking at craniosacral therapy for infants, the jury is still definitely out. This isn’t a practice that isn’t going to be widely accepted by mainstream Western medicine, and that definitely will make it nearly impossible to be covered in the legal realm without some extraordinary circumstances. But, that won’t prevent many parents from seeing if this non-invasive treatment can provide some positive results.