Something that I have encountered as a Massage Therapist is that a client may come in with complaints of conditions that may be serious like Joint Arthrtis, Carpal Tunnel, Migraine Headaches, Sciatica and many other conditions. Many times, through assessment, subjective and objective information collected, the clients are happy to hear that what conditions they thought they had, are often simpler dysfunctions that can be resolved with Massage Therapy, postural and activitiy changes and some stretching/strengthening at home. Trigger Points are small focused tightness within a muscle belly that can refer pain to other areas of the body. To back up the conditions above:
-lower back tightness can manifest like Hip Joint Osteoarthritis
-Muscles that move the jaw can refer pain into the teeth themselves that can feel like a cavity
-Front Shoulder or arm muscle trigger points can refer pain into the wrist and hand and can mimic Carpal Tunnel
-Some Neck muscles with trigger points can manifest like a Migraine Headache.
Tight muscles can pull bones together causing pain. Connective Tissue of the body can manifest in pain.
So visit your Massage Therapist and discuss what you are experiencing and we will use our education and experience to help you to return to a pain free functional body.
I talked briefly about posture in my previous post but I wanted to write a little bit more about it. Someone once wrote about how we have become a “flexion addicted society”. By that, I believe that they meant that we once were a very stand-up active society and many of us have become long term sitters with flexed knees, hips, spine, shoulder joints, elbows, wrists and so on. It’s not so much that it is bad to be in a flexed body position, but that we remain there for an extended period of time. By being in a certain body position for an extended period of time, we can remain in that position due to the shortening and fixing of the connective tissue in that area and that the brain begins to assume that shortened position is the neutral position and will tighten the muscles to keep you in that bad position. What a Registered Massage Therapist does is to release the connective tissue and affected musculature, retain movement in the joints in that area that may become fixed in the process and to help to move the body back into a proper neutral position including a stretching/stretching/homecare program for the client to do at home to maintain the progress during the treatment session.
What also can occur with incorrect posture, is that when there are muscles that are shortened, there are other muscles that will become lengthened. For example, if your front-torso muscles are shortened, then your back muscles with be lengthened. Both shortened muscles and lengthened muscles will be weakened as opposed to muscles that are their proper length. Then, due to the above weakness, other muscles need to be recruited to complete the respective body movement.
What can also occur in muscles that are lengthened or shortened over long periods of time, is that they lose their ability to receive blood and lose their ability to get rid of the metabolic waste that muscles create. In this case, an acidic environment occurs in the muscle causing pain.
Visit your local Registered Massage Therapist here in Victoria or anywhere in British Columbia and get back into balance.
Very often, Osteoarthritis is the effect of simple wear and tear of a joint over a life time. Most times it is a natural process that starts to occur later in life. Many times, Osteoarthritis that occurs earlier in life can be avoided. Triggers like postural imbalance, incorrect biomechanics, muscle over-tightness, over repetitive motions and improper diet can be avoided or altered to reduce the chance of early Osteoarthritis.
Part of the what Massage Therapists do is to look at how a person stands, how a person moves to establish any areas that are too tight, restricting movement, improper biomechanics and other factors to help to prevent any unnecessary wear and tear of joints. There is also a lot of education on what you can do at home, work and at play to avoid any of the triggers of OA.
The best medicine is to practice prevention. Call a Registered Massage Therapist any time to make an appointment for some good, effective, preventative treatment.