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21/May/2019

The cast came off and the joint wasn’t what it used to be. The skin was tight and bound down around the scar, the tissue sticking together. The scar sent burning zingers and the bone felt like fire ants. The joint didn’t want to move. The therapist could feel tight bands and knots in the muscles around the area. The fascia felt tight, not wanting to move. And the joint itself felt stiff. Time for a post-injury massage!

If you are recovering from an injury a massage for pain relief may aid your healing as part of an integrative approach to care.

Minor Injury

For minor injuries such as a pulled muscle, massage can help ease pain and relax tight muscle fibers. Sometimes as little as one session can make a huge difference, and often a short series can get everything back to normal. When seeking a therapeutic massage to ease pain and improve function following a minor injury, the general rule of thumb is to wait 72 hours after the incident, or until any redness, swelling, or heat have dissipated.

Serious Injury

For a more serious incident, the post-injury massage shouldn’t come until after seeking medical attention and being cleared by the health practitioner to receive massage. Typically, people start getting massage while they are in physical therapy or when ending physical therapy. Massage can greatly complement the work done in a PT’s office to rehab after an injury, as it targets the same structures and goals using a slightly different approach.

People use post-injury massage to address pain, scar tissue, stiffness, weakness, and diminished flexibility. It can help improve mood, ease stress, and give a sense of healing and connection to the body. Many people say that massage is that “extra something” that makes a difference in their recovery.

At Nimbus we have taken part in many people’s healing efforts. We have seen people recovering from broken bones, sprains, pulled muscles, falls, accidents, sporting injuries, workplace mishaps… the list goes on. We’d love to hear your story of how massage has made a difference in your recovery.

 


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21/May/2019

What is Trigger Point Therapy?

Trigger Point Therapy uses a firm sustained pressure to relieve painful knots called trigger points (TP’s). Unlike other tender knots, trigger points have four specific characteristics.

  1. TP’s are tender nodules found within a taut band of muscle.
  2. TP’s send a pain signal, called a referral, to a distant or surrounding area.
  3. When pressed, the muscle that has a trigger point twitches.
  4. The pain does not originate from apparent trauma, infection, or neurological problems.

Sometimes, when active, the TP causes constant referral pain. When latent, the referral area only feels painful when one presses on the TP.

Firm pressure treatment

To apply Trigger Point Therapy, your massage therapist locates the knot, presses on it with a firm pressure, and holds it for several seconds. They may repeat this if the initial pressure does not relieve the pain. Once the knot softens, and the pain lessens, your therapist may stretch the muscle to restore the proper length to the muscle fiber.

Your therapist may apply Trigger Point Therapy if you have a baffling muscular pain that doesn’t seem related to injury. Especially if you have tender knots and/or a feeling of weakness in the muscle. They may ask you to look at pain patterns with them to see if any look familiar prior to starting your session. Definitely if you have Myofascial Pain Syndrome, which involves multiple trigger points throughout the body.

A widely respected text in the massage industry written by a pair of doctors, maps all of the muscles in the body along with common trigger points and their referral patterns. Although therapists jokingly call the this manual “the Massage Bible,” controversy surrounds the soundness of the material. In practice however, this style of massage has helped many people find muscular pain relief.

At Nimbus Massage, your therapist may check for trigger points if you have headaches, neck pain, back pain, hip pain, TMJ Dysfunction, or pain in the extremities.  If you don’t like firm pressure, they can adjust the technique to make it more gentle. You may experience this technique during a Massage for Chronic Pain or a Massage for Aches and Pains.


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