When is a pain, not a pain? When it is a Trigger Point. Trigger Points are tight fibrous bands of muscular tissue, that are hypersensitive. When a muscle gets overused repeatedly, you get can micro trauma to the muscles and eventually over time, the muscle become "hypoxic" which basically means very fibrous with less blood flow going through it. Which is the fibrous ball we all know. Now, these areas can become prone to being tender.
We only call these nodules trigger points, when they have become very sensitive. Now the really crazy thing about trigger points, is that they tend to refer pain to areas away from the origin!
So that headache you've been getting?... That could be from your neck or shoulder.
That pain in your hand?... That could be coming from your shoulder!
That pain in your hip?... That could be coming from your lower back.
The great thing about trigger points is that they refer pain in predictable patterns, which makes them easy to examine and treat! One of the ways of treating trigger points, is with dry needling, which Dr Emma Parry (Doctor of Chiropractic) is trained in, this is done in your treatment time and usually done in combination to other treatment. Whilst there is an overlap in trigger points and traditional acupuncture points, they are not equivalent. There is said to be a 70% overlap. The great thing about medical acupuncture a.k.a. dry needling (there is no wet needling, I've never understood this name!?), is that you can get into the heart of the trigger point.
Research shows that by stimulating the A delta sensory fibres, it's a bit like pressing reset to the nerve to the muscle and the bodies reaction is to relax down the muscle. Research also shows that you release Encephaline in your spinal cord, which is a neurotransmitter that acts as pain relief and lastly you get a flushing around the needle which brings much needed blood to the "hypoxic" area, which aids the speed of healing. So dry needling relaxes the muscles helping getting rid of the pain, acts as pain relief and brings fresh blood to the area to aid and speed up the healing process. So when is a pain not a pain? When it's coming from another area known as a "trigger point!" :-)
If you have been getting pain and discomfort, remember to make time for yourself and get a thorough examination. We are Chiropractors based in The City/ Aldgate, Tottenham Court Road/ Fitzrovia and Highgate Village in North London. We treat back pain, neck pain and headaches and have a special interest in scoliosis exercises and sports injuries.