When we think of psychological disorders such as depression, we immediately think that there is an underlying emotional problem or that the problem originates from the mind. This is due to the individual’s inability to cope with or manage the experience of some traumatic or stressful event. There is never usually an assumption that these disorders may have a correlation with some physiological problem that is occurring within the victim’s body. However, with continuous probing and the drive to better understand these illnesses researchers are now finding overwhelming evidence that there is a positive correlation between the physiological (muscle tension and cranial bones) and the psychological (depression). It is important to note that these relationships are not defined as causative as one has to occur for the other to, and that when one set of circumstances increases the other may increase with it.
Jammed results in depression
Obviously, the first place that researchers would look to find answers would be the brain, where the mind is housed. The brain is enclosed in our cranium, which is a group of twenty two bones connected by sutures and also by muscles and the dural sheath or dural membrane. Each cranial bone is distinct and remains separated throughout an individual’s life and have its own distinct movement. The sutures between each bone have blood vessels, nerves and connecting vessels in between them. It has been found, through clinical research that the movement of the cranial bones has a positive correlation to mental health. In an experiment done by Osteopath William Sutherland, on himself, he prohibited the movement of the various bones of his head. He found that he experienced physiological changes in his body, as well as unpleasant emotions. He deduced that the cranial bone movement was needed for good physiological and mental health.
In addition, individuals with mis-alignments or subluxation, not just restriction, of certain cranial bones exhibited mental health issues inclusive of depression. In cases where there is sphenoid misalignment or jamming, patients experienced heightened migraines, headaches, depression, moodiness and psychological disturbances. For cases of occipital, frontal and palate mis-alignments the commonality of the occurrence of headaches and psychological effects, such as personality changes and inappropriate behavior cannot go unnoticed.
Muscle Tension and depression
As demonstrated above, the lack of movement and position of the cranial bones will affect mental health, as an example, a concussion. What role does muscle tension plays in this? The fact is that minuscule muscles are contained between the cranial bones and sutures and as such, with the displacement or the locking of these bones then muscle tension will occur as they become tight. This internal tension within the cranium will be relayed to the outer skull through the dural membrane, which will cause external changes such as muscle spasms as the muscles contract. As a result of this, is that the individual experiences tension headaches, poor concentration, inability to focus etc.
Other muscles will become tense as the restriction or mis-alignment of the cranial bones will affect the brain centers, the brain stem, cranial nerves, spinal nerves, blood and cerebro-spinal fluid (CSF). As the stress message is passed on, muscles throughout the body will tighten in response to the disruption of the dural membrane and its function. As such, the individual may feel muscle tension in the neck and lower back as well.
The Correlation with Depression
The fact is while we would like to assume that there are causative, we do know for sure that locking or subluxation of the cranial bones if not corrected can result in the exhibition of depression. Likewise, it is posited that emotional stress attributed to depression can impact upon the health of the cranial bones. As such, we would seek to say that there is a positive correlation between muscle tension throughout the body, cranial tension and depression.
The case is the same for that of muscle tension. There are so many factors that cause muscle tension and that a prolonged depressive state affects the tonicity of the muscles. As equally, individuals that were experiencing prolonged contraction of muscles or muscle tension, exhibited signs of depression. This is due to the individual’s fight/flight systems inability to properly manage or cope with the pain or discomfort of muscle tension.