Trigger points are areas within a skeletal muscle that cause pain when compressed. You may feel a knotted lump when you apply pressure to the area, giving trigger points the nickname “muscle knots.” The most likely places for trigger points to form include the neck, shoulders, and back, but they can manifest in almost any skeletal muscle in the body.
Trigger point therapy is an alternative medicine focused on detecting and releasing trigger points. The treatment is known by other names as well, including myofascial trigger point therapy and neuromuscular therapy. Learn more about trigger point therapy to help you decide if it’s right for you.
What Can Trigger Point Therapy Treat?
The purpose of trigger point therapy is to release areas of tight, knotted muscles in your body, relieving pain, stiffness, and discomfort in the process. Many health problems are linked to muscle tightness, so this treatment has many effective applications. Talk to a trigger point therapy specialist if you suffer from any of the following:
- Temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder
- Lower back pain
- Carpal tunnel syndrome
- Plantar fasciitis
- Sports injuries
Forms of Trigger Point Therapy
Various techniques are used to release trigger points. Your medical provider may recommend trying one or more of the following based on your situation:
- Massage therapy is an effective way to reach stubborn muscle knots. While you may be able to work out some of the knots with self-massage, it’s best to leave severe trigger points to a licensed massage therapist. Practiced hands can break up trigger point scar tissue and improve blood flow to the area, delivering much-needed oxygen and nutrients to help your muscles heal.
- Chiropractic care involves manual spinal manipulation. While traditionally designed to treat joint alignment issues, chiropractic adjustments can also treat muscle pain and tightness associated with trigger points. The advanced methodologies available can address the root cause of pain and restricted mobility to improve your overall health and wellness.
- Dry needling looks similar to acupuncture, but its uses are different. Dry needling is specifically designed to target trigger points that tense up under stress. Sterile, thin monofilament needles prick the knot to help the muscle release into its normal, elongated form.
- Trigger point injections are a minimally invasive treatment that targets trigger points with a plant-based anti-inflammatory drug called Sarapin. This medication is preferred over corticosteroids because they have the potential to gradually wear out cartilage and tendons. Rest assured that Sarapin injections are always administered by a licensed medical provider.
At Effective Integrative Healthcare, we offer trigger point therapy in all four of these varieties. When you choose us for muscle pain relief, we’ll carefully assess your situation, diagnose your health problem, and review your treatment options, which may include trigger point therapy. Contact us online or call 410-729-2200 today to schedule a free consultation at one of our locations in Crofton, Millersville, or Lanham, MD.