Sometimes the muscles and connective tissue in our bodies can get damaged and this can result in Trigger Points. Trigger points can be described as hyperirritable spots in the fascia (connective tissue) surrounding skeletal muscle. Sometimes people also describe them as “knots” in the muscles which cause pain to the individual. A trigger point in one muscle can also cause pain in another area. For example, active trigger points in the shoulder, neck and face can cause headaches. The trigger points may actually be causing the painful symptoms attributed to other conditions such as arthritis.
What are Trigger Points?
Trigger Points can be formed by:
- Repetitive overuse injuries (using the same body parts, in the same way, hundreds of times on a daily basis) from activities such as typing/mousing, handheld electronics, gardening, home improvement projects, work environments etc…
- Habitually poor posture and poorly designed furniture
- Muscle clenching and tensing due to mental/emotional stress
- Direct injury such as a blow, strain, break, twist or tear
- Long periods of inactivity such as prolonged bed rest or sitting
- Sustained loading as with heavy lifting such as carrying babies, boxes or lifting bedridden patients
After forming, trigger points have two phases, active and latent.
The active, painful phase of the trigger point is the one which produces the unrelenting, debilitating pain symptoms and which motivates people to seek relief.
What are the Symptoms of Active Trigger Points?
Symptoms of an active trigger point may the following:
- A dull ache
- A deep, pressing pain or burning feeling
- A sensation of numbness and fatigue
- Sweating, tearing of eyes, goosebumps and dizziness
Trigger points can also lie quietly in muscles, sometimes for years as these can be known as Latent trigger points. People will sometimes not feel the pain unless pressure is applied on the trigger point and then you feel the tenderness. Latent trigger points may persist for years after apparent recovery from injury.
Latent trigger points can cause:
- Restricted movement
- Distorted muscle movement patterns
- Stiffness and weakness of the affected muscle
How Can Trigger Point Therapy Help?
Trigger point therapy is a technique that involves the applying of pressure to tender muscle tissue in order to relieve pain and dysfunction in other parts of the body. Sometimes massage and trigger point therapy are performed together.
The purpose of trigger point therapy is to eliminate pain and to re-educate the muscles into pain-free habits. Our Massage Therapists perform Trigger point therapy in the comfort of our modern clinic in Brisbane.
Trigger point therapy at Brisbane Livewell Clinic includes the following:
- Comprehensive patient history
- Pain mapping
- Range of motion evaluation
- Postural analysis
- Identification of perpetuating factors
- Correction of perpetuating factors
- Manual techniques to treat myofascial trigger point pain and dysfunction
- A personalised patient stretch rehabilitation program
- Patient education
After several treatments of Trigger point therapy at Brisbane Livewell Clinic, patients can see the following results:
- Reduction of swelling
- Reduction of stiffness
- Range of motion is increased
- Pain and tension is relieved
- Circulation, flexibility and coordination are improved
Please note that HCF and Medibank have recently changed their requirements for claiming on remedial massage. These health funds member are currently not able to claim at Brisbane Livewell Clinic for remedial massage only. This does not affect any other modalities.