Trigger point therapy involves direct pressure being applied to specific areas of a muscle to help reduce muscle tension and pain.
A trigger point is a hyper-irritable nodule found in skeletal muscle which can elicit pain and tenderness when compressed. Trigger points can form from excessive stress, trauma, muscle overload and muscle weakness/imbalances
Acupuncture originated over 5000 years ago in china and has since been found to be a effective modality for pain relief.
According to acupuncture theory there is a balance of energy flow otherwise known as "chi" in the human body which circulates along twelve major pathways, called meridians. Each Meridian is linked to specific internal organs and organ systems. Needles are placed in pre-determined spots in these pathways to help restore normal energy flow and in the process reduce pain and tension.
Dry Needling is a form of acupuncture where sterile needles are placed in muscle trigger points to help elicit a physiological response. This response involves increase blood flow/oxygen to the area and the release of pain relieving endorphins. This helps to relieve pain and normalise muscle function
Joints in the body can often become stiff and painful following repetitive use, overload and abnormal loading. Joint mobilisation involves the therapist performing passive movements of either small or large oscillations of joints to help improve range of motion and reduce joint pain. This is particularly effective for neck and lower back pain
Following acute trauma or injury, a physiological response occurs within the body to help initiate repair and protect the damaged tissue. It has 3 main stages.
1. the inflammatory phase which is usually the most painful stage
2. the proliferative phase where new tissue is produced to help with repair
3. the maturation phase where the tissue is close to returning to optimal function and strength.
These stages will differ in length of time depending on the severity of the injury and the type of tissue that is injured. It is therefore vital that to adequately load the tissue through these phases through specific exercise prescription and incremental loading. Failing to do so increases chance of re-injury, chronic pain and muscle imbalances in surrounding areas.