Cerebrospinal fluid: Rinsing your brain while you sleep

Bronwyn's picture

There’s no denying the power of a good night of sleep, but just in case you haven’t heard enough about the wonders of sleep, yet another benefit has been documented recently by a group of well-slept scientists. 


Lots of study has been done on sleep. For example, some new research helps to explain how deep sleep, or non-REM sleep, can strongly reduce anxiety. Some sleep researchers are convinced that sleep deprivation is the leading cause of anxiety, especially in the age of screen-time. We experience a lot of brain activity during the day, which naturally results in “wear and tear” to the mechanisms. Deep sleep has the function of setting your body’s repair functions in motion, like the clean-up crews that move through a large city at night. 


And here’s the cool thing. Something else is happening during sleep as well: Brainwashing. When you fall asleep, the blood drains out of your head, and cerebrospinal fluid washes through, in rhythmic pulses, and rinses through all the deep, convoluted hidden spaces inside of your brain. When I heard this, the first thing that occurred to me was this question: How does cranio-sacral therapy affect this mechanism? 


Cranio-sacral therapy is a gentle hands-on treatment which uses touch to modulate the action of cerebrospinal fluid in the body. This fluid is produced in specialized cells in the 4th ventricle of the brain, and reabsorbed in certain specialized cells in the dural tube, which runs all the way down your spine. As the fluid is produced and reabsorbed in pulsatile fashion, it creates a rhythm that can be palpated anywhere in the body. It’s this rhythm that makes cranio-sacral therapy possible. Of course more study will need to be done, but I wonder how much of this clean-out effect during sleep can be replicated during a cranio treatment. After all, the treatment helps to encourage the free flow of cerebrospinal fluid, and put the body into a deep state of relaxation and rest. As you know, if you’ve experienced it, craniosacral therapy rejuvenates you so deeply that you walk away feeling like you’ve had a full night’s sleep.


Pretty cool, huh?


If you have any questions, or would like to talk about your particular health concerns, Call 604-678-8600 or email Acubalance and book your free 15 minute phone consultation. I’m always available for a chat.



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