Trigger point therapy is becoming more popular as more people become aware of its benefits. It’s an alternative form of therapy that focuses on trigger points on the body.
These trigger points are located in the skeletal muscles and produce pain when compressed. In some cases, they can develop as a result of trauma or damage to muscle fibers.
Trigger point therapy is primarily used to treat pain and related conditions. The treatment is often referred to as myofascial trigger point therapy, or also neuromuscular therapy.
There are a number of techniques that can be used to target the trigger points and provide pain relief. The most common being chiropractic care, massage therapy, and dry needling.
What Is Trigger Point Therapy Used For?
Within the alternative medicine realm, trigger point therapy is used to treat a range of conditions causing the sufferer pain, and even help manage chronic pain.
- Lower back pain
- Temporomandibular joint pain
- Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
What Is the Difference between Trigger Point Therapy and Traditional Acupuncture?
As mentioned earlier, dry needling is one form of trigger point therapy. This is a technique where the therapist inserts a needle into the trigger points without any injection or medication.
Dry needling is very different to traditional acupuncture, however, and the two should not be confused. Traditional acupuncture involves needles being positioned on points to connect with the pathways that carry vital energy through our bodies.
While there are similarities between the two treatments, trigger point therapy does not use the body’s vital energy flow or ‘chi’ as it’s more commonly known.
In addition to these differences, trigger point is designed to help with musculoskeletal issues. While acupuncture is designed to aid with a wide range of health issues.
The Benefits of Trigger Point Therapy
Let’s take a look at some of the benefits of trigger point therapy in more detail:
Dry needling is used to help with most types of back pain. Usually in conjunction with other therapies. Patients report it’s particularly helpful with lower back pain.
The results vary from person to person, but there have been some scientific studies into this and found there to be some positive results with consistency.
Suffering from headaches is a common problem that is often hard for people to treat. Trigger point therapy has some proven results to help suffers from headaches soothe their symptoms.
Results vary across different people, but it’s definitely worth looking into if conventional medicine isn’t helping.
There have been studies to show that trigger point therapy is very effective at healing heel pain in particular.
The study took two groups of people with heel issues. One group used stretching exercises to tend to the pain.
The other group went through a course of trigger point therapy as well as the stretching exercises. After a few weeks, the group undertaking trigger point therapy showed a vast improvement over the other group.
Reflexology is also very effective at treating pain via the feet and uses a lot of similar techniques.
The treatment has been used extensively to treat the symptoms of Parkinson’s disease. With closed testing being done on groups of sufferers there is always more information coming out.
If this is a condition affecting you or someone close to you it’s worth taking a look at the connections and discussing this with a medical practitioner with an open mind.
When Should I Use Trigger Point Therapy?
Firstly, you should always consult your doctor or physician before going ahead with trigger therapy. This is a formality, but it’s better to be safe and address any health concerns with a professional before going ahead.
There is still limited scientific research when it comes to exactly how effective trigger therapy is. So, for now, the type of people who embrace alternative medicine are happy to go ahead.
It’s also worth remembering that following this course of treatment instead of conventional medicine may slow down, or stop your recovery.
I’m a MA, (CMT) Certified Massage Therapist, Licensed Massage Therapist (LMT), and Reiki Master — I’m a licensed massage therapist with over 10 years of experience in the industry.