Are Myofascial Trigger Points Causing Your Pain?

LIFE.. Yup life is the core of our muscle pain. We live our life and encounter a lot of bumps and bruises along the way… some by our own doing and some made by others. Therefore, we are collecting trigger points in everything we do.

We play sports, work hunched over desks all day, drive in traffic, stare at our phones, accidentally run into walls (well maybe that’s just me), and numerous other activities that leave behind a memory in our body.

What do I mean by a memory you ask. Well, every time we injure ourselves, sit too long in a position, overuse our muscles, or even sleep wrong, our muscles gather trigger points.

Trigger points are irritable spots within the muscles

These irritated spots are the repercussion of life, especially repetitive activities. Repetitive activities can build trigger points in our muscles. Once a trigger point has been activated, the pain will build.

Over a period of time, these repetitive actions create a neural pathway that reinforces and maintains the trigger point. The sad thing is we reach a level of pain that has decided it won’t be ignored anymore. Yet, we may not even know what started the chronic pain issue.

Our muscles are at peak performance when they get proper exercise, oxygen, and stretching. The problem is daily life activities can keep us from these simple needs. Lack of exercise and stretching causes the muscles to contract and tighten up.

Trigger points can manifest when a muscle shortens and creates a new habit; a bad one! The new muscle habit is not easy to break. Just deactivating the trigger point is not enough to help heal the pain manifesting in your body.

Exercise is an important part of the treatment along with the trigger point deactivation

Without lengthening the muscle after the trigger point is deactivated, it will return to its short and tight position. This is why you feel good after a massage and then minutes to days later you can feel it start to go back to that tightened position.

It is recommended to complete specified stretches and simple range of motion exercises. Be sure to do these several times throughout the day. This is key to breaking old muscle habits and building new ones. Otherwise, the muscle can begin to tighten back up.

When a big trauma to our body happens like a car accident, we expect to work on our bodies to help recover. We know we hurt ourselves and we know we need to fix it.

However, what about the more subtle hurts, the ones that are not immediately apparent? If your back aches, you suffer from headaches, hip pain or any other muscle-related pain… do you know why?

“You can't turn back the clock but you can wind it up again.” Bonnie Prudden

Our daily life is building a memory in our muscles that one day is going to scream so loud you can’t ignore it

Ask yourself:

  • “Where did this come from?”

  • “How do I use my muscles?”

  • “Is it work related?”

  • “What is my posture like?”

What we usually do not realize is our daily activities are causing damage too

Impact of stress on our trigger points

Most of the time, trigger points do not cause an issue until we fall under emotional or physical stress. Stress will light that trigger point up and make sure you know it is there. Of course this compounds our stress or emotional upheaval. Now not only are you stressed, but now YOU HURT.

This pain stems from those irritated trigger points. When the trigger points start to cause pain, limit your range of motion, cause circulatory problems, nervous system issues, and weak or fatigued muscles.

It is time to take care of yourself

It comes down to how we take care of our bodies. Did you……

  • Stretch today?

  • Drink plenty of water?

  • Exercise?

  • Take a moment to breathe and enjoy the world around you?

Remember, life is about being better than you were yesterday. So take a few moments a day to honor your body’s needs. Don’t let trigger points sneak up on you and cause pain.

To find a Certified Bonnie Prudden Myotherapist in your area click here.

Watch my Youtube video on trigger points.

Carrie Cox

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