Trigger Point Therapy Explained | Fremont College School of Wellness
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Trigger Point Therapy

muscle-pain-trigger-pointsAnyone who has ever suffered from muscle pain or injury knows how discomfort in one area of the body can cause satellite pain in other areas. Any trained physical therapist or sports therapist would be able to tell you that if you have injured your neck, you may experience head-aches, if you twisted your ankle, you might start noticing a discomfort in your knees when you walk. Pain like is often caused by “trigger points.”  Trigger points are tight areas in muscle tissues that lead to pain in other parts of the body. As massageenvy.com explains, “a trigger point in the back…may produce referral pain in the neck.”

Trigger points can be formed in various ways; usually, they can result from any of the following: injuries that are not allowed to heal before the muscle is put under stress again, repeated heavy lifting, poor posture, mental/physical stress and even sitting or lying in bed for too long. You can also suffer from latent trigger points, injuries that have been dormant but never fully healed.

While there are a number of ways that trigger points can be formed, there are various noninvasive ways to treat them. For example; trigger point massage therapy is specifically designed to target trigger points, ease the tension in that muscle and alleviate the pain by applying focused pressure on the affected area. As the National Association of Myofascial Trigger Point Therapists website explains, trigger points are muscles that are locked in a contracted position; in order to treat the injury, you must unlock the contraction by applying pressure with finger tips or massage instruments to slowly ease the muscle loose. Minor trigger points can be treated at home by practicing self-massage. By using your own finger tips and simple tools, like tennis balls, you can easily work out a trigger point after identifying its location.

Severe Trigger Point Therapy Treatment

For more severe trigger points, however, the American Massage Therapy Association recommends visiting a massage therapist. Massage therapists are trained to understand the various muscles in the human body and how each muscle and tendon relates to each other. This allows them to understand which muscle might be causing the problem and the appropriate way to approach it. A massage therapist’s education allows them to easily find the source of a client’s problem and ease their discomfort with minimal effort.

Trigger points have their own, specialized massage that is designed to locate discomfort and ease the contracted muscles. Though very similar in style to the deep tissue massage, trigger point massages are not designed for relaxation or for the length of a muscle. Instead, they are meant to release specific discomfort by applying and reapplying pressure to the injured muscles and tendons in order to ease pain. This massage is best used for chronic muscle pain and tension, it might even help ease migraines caused by trigger points.

What Causes Trigger Points?

Trigger points can be caused by countless injuries and circumstances and can be treated in numerous ways. If you have experienced a trigger point and the relief treatment can bring you, you understand just how valuable a profession massage therapy is. If this article is the first you have ever heard of trigger points and all the good that massage therapy can do to relieve pain, you might be interested in learning more about a career in massage therapy. If you have been inspired by the good that trained massage professionals can do, visit the Wellness education page to learn more about our amazing programs.

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