Manipulative and Body-Based Practices and Autism


Woman being treated by chiropracterManipulative and body-based practices focus primarily on the structures and systems of the body, including the bones and joints, soft tissues, and circulatory and lymphatic systems. 

Manipulative and body-based practices include chiropractic, cranial osteopathy and massage.

The idea behind the use of manipulative and body-based practices is that the structures and systems of the body can be changed to affect physical functioning and to promote health.


Determining the benefits of manipulative and body-based practices for individuals on the autistic people is difficult because there are so many different practices. We must wait for further research of sufficiently high quality to be completed .

Risks and safety

Some manipulative and body-based practices may carry some risks. For example, the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (2012) reported that: ‘Side effects from spinal manipulation can include temporary headaches, tiredness, or discomfort in the parts of the body that were treated.’ 

More information 

Please see Manipulation-Based Interventions and Autism

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27 May 2022