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Moving Lymph Around the Cranial Nerves An Advanced Protocol By Bruno Chikly Appropriate lymphatic work can help clients in many ways. Here is a protocol for advanced practitioners to address lymphatic fluid around the cranial nerves: 1. Cranial nerve I (CN I): the olfactory nerve can be accessed intra-nasally, as well as by stimulating the lymphatic in the oral cavity (soft palate). It is one of the earliest discovered regions for stimulation of the brain, and it is one of the most important. 2. CN II: the optic nerve, as well as CN III (the oculomotor nerve), CN IV (the trochlear nerve), and CN VI (the abducens nerve), can all be stimulated by working on the layers of the eyes. 3. CN V: the trigeminal nerve controls the sensitivity of the face and cranium, as well as the muscles of mastication. These can be easily drained by working on the three facial branches of CN V—the ophthalmic, the maxillary, and the mandibular branches. 4. CN VII: the facial nerve, to put it simply, is in command of the muscles of facial expression. 5. CN VIII: the vestibulocochlear nerve, which supports hearing and balance, is a little more difficult to access, as most of its path is intracranial. 6. CN IX: the glossopharyngeal nerve is complex; we can work intra-orally and drain the posterior one-third of the tongue, pharynx, and tonsils (usually quite comfortable to access in the mouth, contrary to the Eustachian tube). 7. CN X: the vagus nerve is the longest cranial and extracranial nerve; it has sensory, motor, and some autonomic functions for the viscera. It can be drained along its course in the neck (and inferiorly). 8. CN XI: the spinal accessory nerve can be simply accessed by working on the trapezius and sternocleidomastoid muscles in an ipsilateral and contralateral manner. 9. CN XII: the hypoglossal nerve controls all the intrinsic and extrinsic muscles of the tongue (except for the palatoglossus muscle), and can be accessed by activating the lingual lymphatics. Bruno Chikly, MD, DO, LMT, is course developer and teacher at the Chikly Health Institute. He is an osteopath and medical school graduate from Paris, France, where he received the Medal of the Medical Faculty of Paris VI for his thesis on the lymphatic system. An international seminar leader, lecturer, and writer, Chikly is the author of Silent Waves: Theory and Practice of Lymph Drainage Therapy (IHH Inc., 2001), the first extensive book on the lymphatic system and lymphedema published in North America. In addition to his innovative contributions to the field of health, he has now developed and expanded his work into neuroscience with the Brain Therapy curriculum. Chikly lives in Scottsdale, Arizona, with his wife Alaya. For more information, visit

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