5/22/2013



An instructional video on Trigger Point Massage technique.

Trigger Point Massage help to relieve headaches, neck stiffness, carpal tunnel like symptoms, tennis elbow, bursitis, frozen shoulder, back pain, low back stiffness, sciatica, and even shin splints.

Trigger Point Massage is one of the most effective chronic pain relief treatment currently available. The draw back is that it needs to be done several times a week preferable several times a day.

Muscle is one of our body's largest organ, influences the quality and longevity of our lives. Muscle pain can make us less active, more tense or fatigued. Everyday pressures and stresses, overused injuries in athletes, whiplash trauma and conditions like fibromyalgia or arthritis can produce muscular or "soft tissue" pain often characterized by what many medical professionals call "trigger points."

Trigger points can present themselves as referred patterns of sensation such as sharp pain, dull ache, tingling, pins and needles, hot or cold, as well as can create symptoms such as nausea, ear ache, equilibrium disturbance, or blurred vision. These small, hyperirritable sites in the muscle tissue sometimes refer pain to other locations as in headaches or sciatica.

Trigger Point Therapy is a type of massage therapy which examines and treats muscles and muscle attachments in layers. It addresses surface muscles and connective tissues and deeper ligaments and connective tissues. It is closely aligned with the eastern technique of acupressure massage. The treatment techniques are very similar, the guidelines for applying acupressure apply to most Trigger Point Release applications.

Trigger points usually occur up and down your body along the length off the muscle. They are most common in the axial muscles, especially those used to maintain posture, but can be found throughout the body. Trigger points generally occur in more than one location.

Active and Latent Trigger Points

Trigger points can be classified as either active or latent. Active trigger points cause ongoing, persistent pain; latent trigger points are pain free until pressed. Both create a local twitch response when pressed. They are often associated with decreased range of motion, weakness in the affected muscle group, and decreased ability of the muscle to stretch. Often, active trigger points can cause "satellite," or secondary, trigger points in the reference zone that respond because of the increased stress to the involved muscle groups. For example an active trigger point in the back can create pain and eventually and satellite trigger point in the shoulder. Treating the shoulder trigger point will not have a lasting effect without treating the originating trigger point in the back.

To facilitate the identification of trigger points, you should be as relaxed as possible. Trigger points can be felt by palpating the muscles; trigger points will consist of tender, hard (or ropy) knots or nodules surrounded by what feels like normal muscle tissue. Once a trigger point has been found, the local twitch response may be elicited as muscle or skin twitching. You should feel sour or numb, but not knife-cut like pain when the trigger point is pressed. The trigger points are usually between or beside the bones and tendons or ligaments, on a depression, never on the bones or blood vessels. Next, the patient should be evaluated for referred pain. Knowledge of reference zones is essential to the diagnosis.

Trigger point is a pain-relief techniques to alleviate muscle spasms and cramping. The therapist locates and deactivates `trigger points', which are often tender areas where muscles have been damaged or acquired a re-occurring spasm or `kink' that worsens painfully when aggravated. The major goals are to reduce spasm inducing new blood flow into the affected area.

Spasms also physically reduce blood flow to the trigger point area, reducing oxygen supplied to the tissues and increasing the spasm. Pressure is applied to trigger points, for a short time (between about 7 to 10 seconds per point), which can be momentarily painful but is greatly relieving.

It is common to hit the same trigger points several times during a session, but you won't be leaning into a sore spot for several minutes. Often ice or another cooling agent is used to reduce nervous system response, making the area easier and more comfortable to work. Then the muscles are gently stretched to complete the relaxation process.

Trigger Points - How they are created

Trigger points are clustered areas of pain in or around muscles that usually radiate pain in a predictable pattern. When a muscle, or group of muscles, incurs injury, it automatically contracts around the painful site to support and protect the area. If pain is resolved quickly, the muscles can relax. If pain persists, muscles can become habitually contracted. Sometimes contractions press on nerves causing tingling, numbness, and more pain. Like a sponge that is squeezed, a contracted muscle can’t hold much blood. Blood transports oxygen and nutrients to the muscles and carries away waste products. When a muscle is deprived of healthy circulation, it doesn’t receive enough oxygen and nutrients, and waste products accumulate. This can result in fatigue and soreness. It can also irritate nerves in the area, causing pain to spread beyond the congested area.

Finding the Real Source of Pain Most trigger points are easy to detect by locating the pain, applying pressure and experiencing the subsequent release, however, in some cases, the real source of pain may be an originating trigger point located quite a distance from the "satellite" trigger point (pain site). For example, an originating trigger point for the wrist, forearm and hand is frequently located in the region of the shoulder blade. Thus, pain associated with the wrist, forearm and hand may require treatment of both the originating trigger point and the localized satellite point.

Video provided courtesy of www.massagnerd.com

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