A trigger point is an area of a muscle that either knots or becomes inflamed and causes pain around it or in different areas of the body. When these muscles tighten, the muscle fibers shorten, and cause pain in other areas.
Trigger points can happen throughout the body, but some of the most common places they occur are in the upper back and shoulder areas. Trigger points are often associated with pain in the neck and shoulders, and can also cause headaches.
In most cases, there is a palpable nodule where the trigger point is, and when manipulated, the area is tender or causes pain in the affected area. Multiple things can lead to the formation of trigger points, including:
Your integrative medicine doctor at Enhanced Medical Centers treats trigger points in a variety of ways. Depending on the severity of your trigger points, they may be able to release the tension with spinal adjustment or massage therapy.
Your doctor may use a variety of instruments or techniques to release the muscle’s knot. In other circumstances, they may recommend trigger point injections.
When you see Enhanced Medical Centers for trigger point injections, the process begins by locating and marking your trigger points. Your integrative specialist cleans the area and applies a numbing agent.
Your doctor injects a small needle into the trigger point, and a medication, typically a local anesthetic or corticosteroid, is administered. This numbs the trigger point, eliminating the associated pain. The integrative medical doctor may massage the trigger point by hand or with an instrument, forcing it to relax.
After administering the trigger point injection, your doctor may recommend treating the area with ice or taking an over-the-counter pain medication. They may counsel you on lifestyle changes that can improve the condition of your trigger points. This may include a more ergonomic workplace design, posture improvement, or regular stretching and strengthening exercises.
If you have painful trigger points, it’s time to seek help. With experience and know-how, the team at Enhanced Medical Centers can treat your trigger points and reduce your pain levels. Contact the office today for an appointment or schedule your initial consult directly online.
Feel free to email us regarding any scheduling or general questions!