The chances are that at some point or other, everybody has experienced muscle pain. It might be caused by overworking or straining a muscle, a sports injury, incorrect lifting, even just sleeping in the wrong position. Muscle pain can go from minor to chronic.
Muscle pain is usually down to problems with the fascia, the thick tissue that surrounds our bones and joints. When it's healthy, fascia is soft, relaxed and pliant. But when you feel those hard little knots in the muscle, its trigger points.
Other causes of trigger points are trauma, infection, nerve pain or inflammation. So one of the first steps to take in Trigger Point Therapy is determining the cause. It is also important to pinpoint the source.
Hang on a minute, you say, it's my neck that's sore so that must be the source. Not so. The discomfort in your neck could be referred pain from a trigger point in your back. To make it even more confusing, you may get referred pain from your neck in the form of a headache.
You could describe Trigger Point Therapy as a form of remedial massage, in that direct pressure is applied to those knots to bring relief. It is a great treatment as it can be used on just about anyone.
The aim of the therapist is to not only give pain relief and 'shift' the knot but also to restore the full range of movement. This is because muscles containing trigger points are weaker than healthy muscles and that can affect mobility.
You may have experienced this yourself. Let's say you have pain in your left leg that makes it hard to walk. You try and compensate by putting more weight on your right leg. Then you wake up the next morning with two sore legs.
When we use other muscles to compensate for the sore or damaged ones, we risk creating trigger points in the previously healthy muscles. It's a bit of a vicious circle.
The best course of action is to seek out a professional in your locality who offers Trigger Point Therapy.
A Trigger Point therapist is trained in soft tissue therapies. Through experience, he or she will know the cause and source of your pain and will be able to treat it. The number of sessions needed will vary according to your situation.
If the condition or injury is fairly new, it should only take a few sessions to fix the problem. If, however, you have been putting up with the condition for a while, it will take much longer to fix. In this case, you may require weekly sessions at first, followed by monthly appointments.
Don't expect the treatment to be without discomfort. The good news is this is usually brief. As your therapist finds the trigger points, he will apply firm pressure for up to 90 seconds. This will hurt but the relief it brings makes it all worthwhile.
As with most alternative therapies, Trigger Point Therapy can be combined with other treatments, including medications. It is up to the individual to decide what works best for them.
Conditions that respond well to Trigger Point Therapy include back, neck and shoulder pain, headaches, sciatica and joint pain. It is particularly appropriate for anyone suffering from a sports injury. In fact, for the serious sportsman or woman, regular Trigger Point Therapy sessions may even reduce the risk of injury.
Extensive research has been done and most experts agree that Trigger Point Therapy should always be used in treating sports injuries.
If you feel you could benefit from Trigger Point Therapy it is well worth using Bookwell to find a practitioner in your area. After the first consultation, you will have a good idea of what's involved and how it can help you.