A trigger point occurs when a muscle knots or becomes inflamed. This causes the muscle fibers to shorten, resulting in pain either around the knot, or referring it to another area in the body.
Trigger points are common in the upper back and shoulders and are associated with pain in the neck and shoulders. They’re also known to cause headaches.
To find a trigger point, look for a palpable knot. Once found, manipulate it to check for tenderness or referred pain.
Although a variety of issues can cause trigger points, they’re often the result of an injury or repetitive movements. If you suffer from fibromyalgia or myofascial pain syndrome, you may have an increased risk of developing trigger points.
When you see your medical professional for trigger point treatment, they work to reduce your pain by elevating muscle tension and knots. This is often accomplished through massage therapy and spinal adjustments.
Your medical professional may use their hands or tools to work the muscle, loosening the knot, and lengthening the muscle fibers to eliminate the referred pain.
If your trigger point pain is severe, your medical professional may recommend trigger point injections.
Trigger point injections use a medication, often a local anesthetic or corticosteroid, that’s directly injected into the sore muscle.
First, your medical professional locates and marks your trigger points, then cleans the area and prepares it for the injection. Once ready, they use a small needle to administer the medication.
After providing the shot, your medical professional may massage the trigger point. That forces it to relax and reduces the amount of referred pain it causes.
If you experience discomfort after your trigger point injections, the team at Arrowhead Physical Medicine recommends using ice and taking an over-the-counter pain reliever.
If your trigger point pain returns, your medical professional may recommend certain lifestyle changes, including:
If you’re tired of suffering from trigger points, seek help at Arrowhead Physical Medicine. The highly-trained team offers trigger point injection therapy and can eliminate your pain once and for all. Contact the office today or book your appointment conveniently online.
Feel free to email us regarding any scheduling or general questions!