Body tightness | Development | Reflux | Tongue-Ties | Feeding | Sleep
At CranialOT, I provide occupational therapy with a big craniosacral therapy focus both in-person (either in my clinic in Stoney Creek, Ontario; or locally in your home) and virtually. These services may be covered by your extended health insurance if you have 'occupational therapy' coverage.
Is your precious little one facing challenges like difficulty breastfeeding, flat head, or dealing with reflux?
Do you find leaving the house a daunting task due to constant crying?
At CranialOT, we understand the unique needs of babies and young children, and we're here to provide the comfort and relief they deserve.
Say goodbye to sleepless nights and hello to a joyful parenting journey. Craniosacral Therapy (CST) offers rapid relief for your baby's persistent issues.
You are not alone, and there is hope! No parent should have to watch their child struggle, and that's where I come in. I specialize in CST for babies and young children, helping them overcome various challenges with grace and gentleness.
CST sessions are tailored to address these specific issues. I believe that every baby deserves a smooth start in life, and CST can make that a reality.
CST has been shown to improve latch, relieve reflux or gassiness, ease fussiness, enhance neck mobility, improve sleep, and even boost milk production – all in a non-invasive, soothing manner.
Feeding Concerns (clicking, milk dribbling, choking, sputtering) at breast or bottle
Weak or Shallow Latch
Sucking / Swallowing difficulties
Popping on/off the breast
High arched palate
Head shape (flat spots, coned areas, bulges, or bones overlapping)
Head turning preference
Chronic ear infections
Chronic congestion or cough
Vacuum/forceps assisted delivery
Very long labour or fast labour
Difficulty with tummy time
Asymmetries in rolling, crawling
Strong gag reflex
Sensory processing differences
Un-integrated primitive reflexes
Craniosacral therapy (CST) is a non-invasive, hands-on technique that uses a very light touch with about 5 grams of pressure (about the pressure with which you would touch your eyelid). It will not hurt your baby in any way. CST can be used as a stand-alone therapy or in combination with other methods. In my case, I blend craniosacral therapy with my expertise in infant development and primitive reflex integration, and I often use a mix of techniques in each session, with craniosacral therapy being the cornerstone modality. Craniosacral therapy can help with torticollis, head shape moulding, tethered oral tissues, reflux, feeding challenges, gassiness, constipation, sleep, and so much more.
I truly believe that every baby should have at least 2-3 CST sessions after birth.
Stop the comparison game and start feeling confident in your baby's development. I can support you with making tummy time fun, and playfully encouraging your baby with rolling, sitting, crawling, pulling to stand, and walking.
Feeding | Reflux | Oral Motor Function | Tongue-Ties (In-person/Virtual)
While I am not a lactation consultant, I am able to assess positioning, tongue/lip/cheek function, and support you and your baby in feeding more efficiently. I also do intra-oral releases in the mouth and can help you re-train your baby's oral motor function pre/post tongue-tie release. I can also help with introducing solids and the sensory and oral motor skills needed for that.In terms of reflux it may be common, but it is not normal. And you don't have to wait for your little one to outgrow it or have them on medications. There is a better way ... one that addresses the underlying cause(s) to your baby's discomfort, so that they (& you) can get some relief.
Using a holistic approach to sleep, I will teach you how to connect with your baby on a deeper level and how to reinforce important feelings of safety and security so that when developmentally ready, your baby will be prepared and will be able to fall asleep and stay asleep .... All while using an attachment focus and responsive, supportive parenting strategies. You do not need to use sleep training to improve your baby's sleep.
We have 8 senses (yes, 8!). Sensory processing and primitive reflexes underly our daily functioning. Everything from sleep to eating to moving and playing. I offer consultations where I will first analyze which of the 8 sensory systems is not efficiently processing information, which primitive reflexes might be un-integrated, or whether your child has low vagal tone. I then provide you with recommendations to set you and your child up for future success using various therapy activities to assist in actively increasing the brain’s awareness and ability to respond appropriately.
I am a skilled and compassionate occupational therapist who specializes in craniosacral therapy (CST) for babies and young children.
I understand the delicate nature of your baby's needs. The gentle touch of CST ensures a comfortable and calming experience for your little one.
I personalize each CST session to target your baby's specific challenges, ensuring effective and efficient results.
I believe that a happy baby makes for a happy family. CranialOT therapy empowers you to enjoy parenthood to the fullest.
I'm Kaili, your Baby Guru.
I have been an Occupational Therapist for 15+ years, and also hold many additional certifications in holistic infant sleep, reflux, and craniosacral therapy, amongst the many courses I have taken in a variety of topics. I love everything there is when it comes to babies and young children.
My business was created when I was a young new mom myself, with about 8 years of occupational therapy under my belt – I wanted to find a way to create a bonding community of moms and babies that helped bring clarity around what is biologically normal or typical, but also to help reduce the stress and overwhelm that often comes with new motherhood. Ultimately my goal is to help you release the stress, the guilt, the worry, and start spending more time confident in the supermom that you are. More time trusting yourself and your baby.
The more I learn about craniosacral therapy and the brain, the more I realize this is truly the cornerstone of so many concerns in babyhood, childhood, and well into adulthood. As a result, I truly believe that every single human should experience the power of craniosacral therapy.
After the loves of my life, my husband, son, and daughter, my work and is a huge passion. And, I hope that you will choose us to be a small part of your motherhood journey.
My role is to be by your side, like a good friend, therapist, and mentor, as you navigate the wild ride of motherhood in the first few years.
My approach is evidence informed, developmentally appropriate, attachment-focused, as we dive into your questions and concerns around developmental milestones, sleep, reflux, feeding/solids, sensory processing, and more.
I guide you, but also empower you to lean in & trust your mama instincts. To tune into the baby you have in front of you, tune into what resonates w/ you & your family, what feels right a light in your heart. Tuning in so that you can start to tune out all the unsolicited advice from well meaning family, friends, social media, and yes even sometimes that of your doctor.
CranialOT is short for Craniosacral Occupational Therapy. It is a blend of my 15 years as a pediatric occupational therapist, supporting babies and children with varying diagnoses and my more recent deep dive and certification into the infant craniosacral therapy world. The more I learn about the body, the brain, how compression of cranial bones affect the brain and cranial nerves, and how tightness or restriction in the fascia enveloping our entire body affects our functioning, the more I truly believe that craniosacral therapy is a missing piece. If the brain is not working optimally and/or the body is tight, then we cannot expect our littlest ones to function at their best.
Craniosacral therapy (CST) is a gentle hands-on treatment, almost like a very light massage that releases tension from the fascia surrounding your entire body, while also restoring the movement of fluids in and around the central nervous system (called the cerebrospinal fluid). This gentle massage restores circulation and function, by releasing the tension or blockages that might be present. CST is thought to improve the efficiency of your biological processes through boosting self-regulation, self correction and self-healing.
Craniosacral therapy is very important for all infants (and mamas too) after birth, because they may have experienced prolonged compressed positions in the pelvis, the cord around their neck, or distress during delivery as a result of forceps, ventouse, or cesarean delivery. Compression of the cranial (head) bones, compression of the cranial nerves, and body tightness can all affect many activities of daily living, as well as a baby's overall quality of life.
Pediatric occupational therapists are registered occupational therapists who have done additional training in various pediatric approaches. These additional trainings are dependent on the therapist’s interests and may include handwriting approaches, sensory integration, feeding (including sensory and oral motor challenges and tethered oral tissue therapy for pre/post frenectomy), NDT (neurodevelopmental treatment), and more.
At CranialOT, I focus on babies and young children. I assess their overall development with a focus on their “occupations” or activities of daily living. For infants and toddlers, this may include:
• Playing & moving
• Eating (breast or bottle feeding and solids)
• Overall Regulation (ie. fussy, unsettled, cranky)
Many things can interfere with these daily occupations and lead to difficulties with daily function. Some examples might include tethered oral tissues, body tightness or pain and discomfort, difficulties with motor development and motor skills, sensory processing differences, and more.
Craniosacral therapy is a non-invasive, hands-on technique that uses a very light touch with about 5 grams of pressure (about the pressure with which you would touch your eyelid). Using my fingertips, I feel through the body to see if I can find areas of tightness or tension, areas that are restricted or feel stuck - like they don't move well. Then, with 5 grams of pressure, I release those tissues or cranial bones to create the space needed for improvements and growth. Though this treatment will not hurt your baby, there may be an increase of sleepiness after the treatment, fussiness for a few days following. This can happen when a good emotional release has occurred in the body. One way to help is to talk to your baby - talk about what you think may have been stressful (ie. from their time in utero or their birth experience) or just validate that they are feeling sad, frustrated, have a story to tell ... and be present while you listen to them.
Sometimes you will also see a 'regression' after a few days of progress. This is also normal! This is why I recommend a follow-up session in 5-7 days so that we can work on the next thing that needs to be released.
If no changes have been observed after 2-3 sessions, it may be beneficial to receive another treatment, or switch practitioners for the next treatment.
What does a session look like?
The initial appointment includes a review of your health history and birth-story, gentle assessments and treatment. The assessment and treatment happen at the same time. It may look like I'm doing nothing. It may seem like I'm just looking at your baby and admiring how cute they are. This is true! But I'm also working. The movements I do during craniosacral therapy are micro movements that you will not see. What you will see is how your baby reacts - they may twitch, move their body around, yawn, sigh, readjust their body, or start to look very relaxed, calm and even fall asleep. I may also blend in my skills as an OT and do various other techniques to support your baby's development & regulation.
Depending on your child’s comfort level with meeting new people, the first session can either consist of them laying on the table for the majority of the session, in your arms, feeding, or sitting in your lap. I often find working while baby is feeding to be quite effective as well. For older babies, toddlers, and pre-schoolers, it may take a few sessions for your child to warm up to the care provider. I will do their best to gain the trust of the child.
Often you will see some changes either during the session or a few days after the first session. Sometimes an area needs to be released and integrated into the body after a good, long sleep (or perhaps a few days worth of naps) before you see some changes.
While changes can often be seen after the first session, it is strongly recommended to have another session within 5-7 days to make sure the changes have fully integrated. It may take anywhere from 3-8 treatments spread over a couple of months to resolve the major issue of concern.
Benefits may include a happier, calmer, more relaxed baby that feeds much easier. Easing of symptoms like reflux, colic, fussiness, ear infections, and even noticeable changes in head shape. You may notice easier management of emotions, improved digestion, better sleep, able to eat (and enjoy) more textured foods. Really the possibilities are endless..
If you have 'occupational therapy' coverage through your extended health insurance, then my services will be covered partially or in full, depending on the details of your benefits package.
Stoney Creek, Ontario