What is trigger point therapy?
Myofascial trigger points, or simply trigger points or muscle knots, are tight areas in the soft tissue that causes pain and aching in other parts of the body. Trigger points are commonly caused by muscle overuse, trauma, inflammation, infection, and nerve pain. Trigger points can cause pain over the affected area and also be felt in another part of the body.
Muscles with trigger points are weaker than normal, healthy muscles because they are unable to perform their normal function and move through their full range of motion. Other muscles may also be affected by these muscle knots and develop trigger points if the affected muscle is not treated right away. There are other factors that can contribute to the problem such as poor nutrition, stress, and chronic illness.
Trigger point therapy is a massage therapy specifically designed to alleviate the pain that causes the knots by applying isolated pressure, manipulation, stretching, and release on the target areas of pain. It should be remembered that the areas targeted may be different from where the client actually feels the pain.
How does trigger point therapy work?
The therapist applies a firm digital pressure in locating specific points that cause pain and restricted movement. The client actively participates in the session through deep breaths to help the therapist identify the exact location and intensity of the discomfort. The client is usually unclothed throughout the treatment while the use of essential oils is optional. It can be used in conjunction with other modalities such as sports massage.
Benefits of trigger point therapy
Just like any other massage therapies, trigger point therapy is useful in addressing chronic pain patterns. More specifically, it can provide relief in the following pain-related conditions:
- Neck pain
- Lower back pain
- Shoulder pain
- Knee pain
- Muscle Pain
- Joint pain
Additionally, it can benefit anyone who has the following conditions:
- sports and dance related injuries
- carpal tunnel syndrome
- temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorders
- stress and fatigue