Cranial Osteopath Exeter

Here at the Estuary Clinic Topsham, Exeter we have a team of highly qualified cranial osteopath specialists, registered with the general osteopathic council.

Cranial osteopathy is one of the most gentle and subtle fields within osteopathy. It is not focused just on the bones of the skull, but addresses the whole body, with an emphasis on the central nervous system, the meninges, the cerebro-spinal fluid and the sacral bone. These structures are vital for an individual’s existence and well-being and even the slightest dysfunction can cause ailments within any of the bodily systems.

Traditional osteopathy recognizes that external forces and stressors can cause restrictions in the joints, ligaments and muscles of the body. In the same way cranial osteopaths acknowledge that postural imbalance or trauma can restrict not just the cranial bones, but compromise any structure below.


Meet the practitioners

  • Anna Nikova M.Ost Osteopath

    Anna Nikova M.Ost Osteopath

  • BSc (Hons) Osteopathy, Acupuncture MBAcC

    BSc (Hons) Osteopathy, Acupuncture MBAcC

Cranial Osteopathy in detail

Grays shullThe anatomy behind cranial osteopathy The human skull consists of 22 bones, single or paired. The inner surface is lined with membranes – the meninges – which protect and cradle the brain. They extend down the spinal cord and attach to the sacral bone. Inside the meninges flows the cerebrospinal fluid – a clear liquid which serves for protection, nutrition, electrolyte balance and cleansing of the cranium and spinal canal. From the brain and the spinal cord, a.k.a. the central nervous system (CNS), nerves extend to the organs and muscles. In the cranium they pass through very narrow foramen, situated in or between the different skull bones and tiny apertures in the membranes.

Simple trauma, systemic disease, musle strain, improper posture – they can all cause the CNS and the supporting structures to be compromised. The balance and coordination between the 22 skull bones is as precise as a Swiss watch – if one is out of line it affects the whole of this system. A compromised position of a skull bone can create a twist in the meninges or vise versa. In this case the narrow passage ways of the nerves and the flow of the cerebro-spinal fluid are also affected. The same scenario can also be caused by an injury or imbalance to the sacrum, which pulls the meninges and influences the structures described above.

by Anna Nikova
Reviewed: 20/11/14