The Muscle Component of your Pain Syndrome

Some people may wonder why I often use the massager and put pressure on the trigger points as part of your treatment, whilst some have even had the pleasure of dry needling as part of their care. I understand at times it may be painful, so here is why I do this:

Most patients who come in to the clinic have chronic muscle issues as part of the functional changes that occur due to poor posture and often the issue they have come in for has been building over some time. During an adjustment, the muscles will adapt, change and relax. However, during the healing process these functional changes need to be addressed to make sure your body is functioning as best as it can to prevent it from doing further damage during this susceptible time. Studies show that those who present with pain syndromes are likely to have altered proprioception (your brains ability to know where your body is in space; your joints are the main culprits here) and co-ordination. These also make you more likely to cause further damage if the problem is not treated and resolved.

The muscle side of your injury can be treated during the rehabilitation phase of your care. Usually rehabilitation involves some kind of exercise to help improve strength, and often stretching to improve flexibility to decrease the chances of it happening again. However, exercises alone (with no consideration of the functional changes), poor co-ordination and poor proprioception lead to exercises being performed in a dysfunctional manner, causing increased wear and increased risk of further injury. This means, along with the exercises, there needs to be some form of manual therapy to the joints and muscles to restore joint movement, help your brain and your body communicate better and improve muscle function, by addressing the tightness and trigger points.

Lots of studies have been conducted on vibration massage and result in decreased pain and improved flexibility by increasing blood flow and improving nutrition to the tissues. Vibration also is able to prevent muscle atrophy and stimulate further growth in the tissues by promoting
contraction and extension of muscle fibres, strengthening muscle tension, elasticity and tolerance. So the Dr Graeme massager isn’t so bad!

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